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Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Posted by moccasinlanding z9A AL (My Page) on
Mon, Jun 17, 13 at 16:30

Ok, so my reference book is stored, and I am too anxious here to take time to google what I have no idea about identity.

Please tell me these funny critters on my Moonlight Sonata flower scape are pollenators and not sucking aphids bleeding off the fragrance!

Pictures at 10:00 (no...I jest...I just took them) from my cell phone.

2013-06-17_15-13-31_768
2013-06-17_15-14-47_917

HEEELLLLLLPPPPP!!!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Maybe boxelder bug nymphs? They look too big to be aphids, but yet too yellow to be boxelder nymphs. Maybe someone else will know.

Karen


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

I don't know what boxelder is, but will begin searching there for a way to determine their troublemaking potential. Never saw such a spidery looking thing before.


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Mocc not sure what they are almost like termites. They look like they are getting a drink on the dew still on top of the flower. I have seen lizards and bees do it. Good luck.


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Nymph of something. I'd need a clearer close-up. Perhaps boxelder bug, perhaps leaf-footed bug, perhaps something else.

tj


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

70% of insects are beneficial. Just keep watching. If there is no damage to your plants, then leave it alone. Maybe it's a predator that eats aphids. Can't tell anything from the photo.

Steve


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

No idea...pic is not big enough...Here are some more possibilities:

Rosy Apple Aphid

Texas carpenter ant


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

  • Posted by marric Z5a Ontario (My Page) on
    Mon, Jun 17, 13 at 19:44

Check out the Oleander aphid and see if that's it. http://www.mymonarchguide.com/2007/08/there-are-these-little-orange-things.html


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Could be this?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zelus_longipes


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

  • Posted by Dgregory 6A - So.Central IL (My Page) on
    Mon, Jun 17, 13 at 20:13

The closest I could come to it, from flipping through pics in my Audubon Society Insects and Spiders Field Guide, is a "Rosy Apple Aphid"

hth,
Deb


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

see google link below
kinda rosy and not really orange, but... *shrug*

Deb

Here is a link that might be useful: rosy apple aphid pics


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

There is a Pest Forum that Ken and I frequent...uh, wait a minute, what did I say... don't say it, don't even think it...maybe I should say a Garden Clinic Forum and if you get a good pic the folks there should be able to ID it.

tj

Here is a link that might be useful: Name that Pest


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Thanks. Barring any dire consequences like being struck by lightning for what I did, I took things into my own (inept but effective) hands, and killed the little suckers.

Never saw anything like them before, like an aphid on steroids with black long spidery legs. When I approached, they hid behind the inflorescence. They gathered worshipfully at the top of the big unopened bud on Moonlight Sonata--a fragrant which is in the process of blooming now.

I put my hand over the top of the scape, closed my fingers and squeezed enough to demolish the colorful bugs. They were similar in composition to the soft-bodied aphids okay. They were not aggressive and did not bite me. Perhaps I could have exterminated them with a quick blast of water. I'd have preferred to let them be, but what if they were the kin of the wooly aphids which dropped in unannounced last week on the Yesterday's Memories.

Before any of the orange spidery aphid-looking bugs relatives come searching for these, I better find out if it was friend or foe. Hope it was not the last of its kind in the world, you know.

Perhaps it was the fragrance from Moonlight Sonata that drew them to this one plant, this one inflorescence that they seemed to dote on. Not on the open flower with pollen, on the exterior of the flower buds.

If I trust the sense of smell of these insects, it had a choice of several fragrant blooming hosta, all within a few feet of one another. Yet they CHOSE Moonlight Sonata. I'm thinking that this one is more fragrant of the early blooming fragrant flowered hosta.

Early in the season for fragrants as it is, finding which one carries the honey smell of the plantaginea fragrance, should not be a hard question to answer. Then I'll get a couple more Moonlight Sonatas!

The fragrance was so pronounced this afternoon, I easily detected it from 15-20 feet away. I was hoping it was lovely Holly's Dazzler with her unique purple/white flowers, but the bugs voted for Moonlight Sonata.

I'll have to write this observation in my notes for Moonlight Sonata.


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Don, the rosy apple aphid was close, but my bugs had 2 parts. They had the rear part stuck up in the air. The legs were more spidery and not folded looking. The color is right though. But not the Schmoo body.

I could not find the Texas carpenter ant. Ant is a possibility, although I hope it is not an ant. The 2 body parts are ant-like. I'll do a search on that topic.

When I run across any insect life form with orange and black, I think of the butterflies, which color combo means to the birds this is not a good food source, may be poisonous or yucky. Some other insects adopt the color pattern but not the poisonous properties. I'm sure the wild birds SAW these insects, yet they did not pick them off as they could have. I think it may have to do with the color pattern.

Only finding what it is will reveal the nature of the critter.


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

I think picture #19 at the reference below might be our bug.
It is a milkweed assassin bug, nymph stage. Might be it.

The legs are right, the attitude of the rear end is right, could not tell any black on the body, only on the legs. Very bright orange.
Zelus longipes

Here is a link that might be useful: Milkweed assassin bug


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

If it was an assassin bug nymph, that is a friend, not a foe.

tj


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

It is the milkweed assassin bug. When I went after them yesterday, I missed some, they went into hiding. So this morning they were back at work, whatever that might be. How long do they stay, such as that, and how are they benefiting my garden, or MY HOSTA?

Now I notice them, plain as day. The little guys are Schmoos in orange suits.

This picture was with my Android tablet, Yesterday.
Garden13Jun0833

Garden13Jun0875

Really thank you all for taking an interest, and learning something important....not all bugs are bad, so check it out.
Now what happens to these nymphs? Anybody know offhand, in 20 words or less explain it to me so I don't have to wade through google to know what they look like after they morph into another plase.....these guys are incredible insects.


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Not sure of all the instars they go through, but a number of pix at the link. As the link states:

"They are generalist predators feeding on a wide range of soft-bodied prey in garden and fields such as mosquitoes, flies, earthworms, cucumber beetles and caterpillars (fall armyworm, rootworm etc.)."

tj

Edit: Are the legs banded like the pix at the link?

Here is a link that might be useful: Various instar pix

This post was edited by tsugajunkie on Tue, Jun 18, 13 at 22:36


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

A little off-topic here, but I wonder how many people know what you mean when you say "schmoo shaped"? HAHAHA,

Gosh, how many years has it been since Al Capp stopped drawing Dick Tracy?

chris


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

Well, it's been a LONG time.
It was in the Lil' Abner strips, done by Al Capp true enough.
Here is a picture of one. This is for educational purposes, you can see how the nymph's shape is very "schmoo"-like.


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

May I ask TJ about where the milkweed assassin came from.

In the last week, I brought home from Lowes 5 $2 reduced price shrubs. One was a milkweed.

I also picked up 3 milkweeds from a neighbor lady who is an organic gardener. And, got a couple of the angel trumpets from her, and a loquat and a fig. Since they are a generalist predator, could they live on other shrubbery besides hosta, milkweed, or whatever?

It is my belief that the nymphs came from the neighborlady, not from a commercial site where plants in their care are generally sprayed to debug them regularly.

Now. If I had used the ammonia/water 1:10 solution to spray where these bugs were living, would it have indiscriminately killed the nymphs as surely as my hand swiping over them only did away with a few if any?


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

This morning I moved another fragrant hosta in bloom beside the Moonlight Sonata. It was Hadspen White. I waited to see if any of the nymphs would migrate to the other hosta flower scape.

No, they did not migrate. They stayed totally on the Moonlight Sonata. I'm thinking these bugs have a fondness for the scent exuded by this particular hosta.


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

They could have hitch-hiked on any of the plants or even came as eggs and hatched. Why they like the Midnight Sonata is anyone's guess. Perhaps its scent is similar to the milkweed in bloom.

tj


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

As a kid, I always thought a schmoo would be a grand pet to have! Come to think of it, I still do.

Glad your unknown is a good one and glad I will now know to leave it be should I ever come across one.

Cyn


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RE: Is there a giant orange aphid with black legs?

  • Posted by Babka 9b NorCal (My Page) on
    Thu, Jun 20, 13 at 18:19

I still love Schmoos!!!!

-Babka


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