Insects*
(and spiders)

* wherever we find them!

Most people usually refer to any crawling or flying creatures as ‘bugs’. So how do you learn about them? To start, all insects have six legs (and three distinct body parts). Spiders always have eight legs, and other ‘bugs’ can have many more legs. Yes, it can be a bit confusing, therefore this field guide to help.


This will (primarily) be a regional Field Guide to Insects for Middlesex County in particular, and New Jersey in general, but will, of course, have relevance throughout the mid-Atlantic region. Any insects included here that are from outside this general area will be noted as such. Butterflies, moths and dragonflies/damselflies will be placed in their own field guides (see menu to the left). Use this guide as a starting point, a place to figure out where in the Kaufman Field Guide to search deeper. From there, you can confirm your sightings on bugguide.net, a truly great resource run by dedicated amateurs that just want to help. Once there, use their “Clickable Guide” near the top left of their home page. Simply click on the type of insect you are trying to I.D., and browse from there.


The order used in this guide complies with the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, 2006 edition. The authors, Eric Eaton and Kenn Kaufman are experts in the field and, interestingly, both are accessible for information.

  1. BulletNeed help IDENTIFYING INSECTS? See Invertebrate Identification Guide (under BioKIDS, below). A great first stop!

  2. BulletTICK INFORMATION! Click the link for a great deal of information and help with identifying ticks, avoiding them and treatment for bites. Lots of excellent links.

  3. BulletIf you’re looking to really learn about insects, start with Wikipedia. This should keep you very busy! 

  4. BulletBioKIDS from the University of Michigan. Not just for children but for anyone just starting out with insects.

  5. BulletCritter Catalog

  6. BulletBioKIDS Glossary. An excellent resource to better understand words used when working with living things.

  7. BulletInvertebrate Identification Guide (a fabulous resource for everyone). (.pdf)

  8. BulletLeafhoppers information page.

  9. BulletLinks for Teachers 

  10. BulletTracks and Sign Guide. (.pdf) This is invaluable as a resource.

  11. BulletBritish Bugs has a great page for those interested in insect (Hemiptera) anatomy. While the insects are likely not exactly like those found here, they are close enough for you to get a very good idea of insect parts. (If you know of a similar page for North American insects, please let us know.)

  12. BulletBugguide.net - Extremely thorough, great photos and range maps. THIS page is a good starting point.

  13. BulletInsect use of pheromones and smell from Buginfo.

  14. BulletBug Tracks, a wonderful blog by Charlie Eiseman. 

  15. BulletIdentifying Crane Flies. This is from Pennsylvania and is a great resource for us in New Jersey.

  16. BulletSome amazing insect facts from Earthlife.net, a site with a huge number of resources. 

  17. BulletNorth American Insects and Spiders - extremely comprehensive with great photos.

  18. BulletSmithsonian Institution’s Buginfo page. A GREAT place to start.

"Nature will bear the closest inspection. She invites us to lay our eye level with her smallest leaf, and take an insect view of its plain."

Henry David Thoreau (1817 - 1862)

It is better to be a young June-bug than an old bird of paradise.”

Mark Twain

Insect Category            (# of species identified in each group)


NON-INSECT INVERTEBRATES (22-27)            (11)

  1. -Long-bodies Cellar Spider (Pholcus phalangioides) 22

  2. -Common Cobweb Weaver, (Steatoda borealis) *

  3. -Black & Yellow Garden Spider (Argiope aurantia) 22

  4. -Spinybacked Orbweaver (Gasteracantha cancriformis) 22

  5. -Carolina Wolf Spider (Hogna carolinensis) 22*

  6. -Common Hentz Jumper (Hentzia palmarum) 22*

  7. -Whitebanded Crab Spider (Misumenoides formosipes)-22 *

  8. -Harvestman (Daddy Long Legs) Leiobunum nigropalpi 24

  9. -American Dog Tick (Dermacentor variabilis) 24

  10. -House Centipede ( Scutigera coleoptrata) 26

  11. -Millipede (Cylindroiulus caeruleocinctus) 26 *


PRIMITIVE INSECTS and MINOR ORDERS (28-41)   (2)

  1. -European Earwig (Forficula auricularia) 28

  2. -Four-lined Silverfish (Ctenolepisma lineata) 28


DRAGONFLIES and DAMSELFLIES (42-53)


MAYFLIES, CADDISFLIES, STONEFLIES (54-61)      (1)

  1. -Caddisfly  (Limnephilus submonilifer) 58 *


ROACHES, MANTIDS, WALKINGSTICKS (62-67)         (3)

  1. -Wood Cockroach (Parcoblatta virginica) 62

  2. -Soldier Beetle (Podabrus brevicollis) 62 *

  3. -Northern Walkingstick (Diapheromera femorata) 66


GRASSHOPPERS, KATYDIDS, CRICKETS (68-85)        (8)

  1. -Northern Green-striped Grasshopper 

  2. -(Chortophaga viridifasciata viridifasciata) 70 *

  3. -Seaside Grasshopper (Trimerotropis maritime) 70 *

  4. -Differential Grasshopper (Melanoplus differentialis) 74 *

  5. -Pine Tree Spur-throat Grasshopper (Melanoplus punctulatus) 74

  6. -Lesser Angle-winged Katydid (Microcentrum retinerve) 76

  7. -Short-winged Meadow Katydid (Conocephalus brevipennis) 78 *

  8. -Narrow-winged Tree Cricket (Oecanthus niveus)-82 *


CICADAS, APHIDS and THEIR RELATIVES (86-105) (20)

  1. -Treehopper (Archasia pallida 90 *

  2. -Treehopper (Ophiderma salamandra) 92

  3. -Treehopper (Heliria gibberata) 92 *

  4. -Treehopper (Smilia camelus) 92

  5. -Treehopper (Ceresa palmeri) 92 *

  6. -Treehopper (Telamona tiliae) 92 *

  7. -Cyrtolobus 92*

  8. -Speckled Sharpshooter (Paraulacizes irrorata) 94

  9. -Subgenus Graphocephala (Graphocephala Subgenus Graphocephala) » Graphocephala picta 94

  10. -Leafhopper (Gyponana octolineata) 94 *

  11. -Leafhopper (Coelidia olitoria) 94 *

  12. -Saddled Leafhopper (Colladonus clitellarius) 94 *

  13. -Leafhopper (Ponana quadralaba) 94

  14. -Leafhopper - Coelidia olitoria 94

  15. -Scaphoideus sp - Scaphoideus  94*

  16. -Leafhopper - Eratoneura osborni 94 *

  17. -Planthopper (Bothriocera cognita) 96

  18. -Planthopper (Acanalonia conica) 96

  19. -Northern Flatid Planthopper (Anormenis chloris) 96 *

  20. -Citrus Flatid Planthopper (Metcalfa pruinosa)


TYPICAL TRUE BUGS (106-127)                 (16)

  1. -Water Strider (Aquarius remigis)

  2. -Genus Prepops 112 ?

  3. -Plant Bug (Lopidea sp.) 112 *?

  4. -Plant Bug (Phytocoris venustus) 112 *

  5. -Wheel Bug (Arilus cristatus) 116

  6. -Large Milkweed Bug (Oncopeltus fasciatus) 118

  7. -Long-necked Seed Bug (Myodocha serripes) 118

  8. -Box Elder nymph (Boisea trivittata) 120

  9. -Dirt-colored Seed Bug (Ozophora picturata) 120 *

  10. -Western Conifer Seed Bug (Leptoglossus occidentalis) 122

  11. -Stink Bug Banasa dimiata 124

  12. -Harlequin Bug (Murgantia histrionica) 124

  13. -Green Stink Bug (Chinavia hilaris) 124

  14. -Dusky Stink Bug (Euschistus tristigmus) 124

  15. -Stink Bug (Banasa calva) 124

  16. -Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (Halyomorpha halys) 124 *


BEETLES (128-219)                                          (35)

  1. -Oblique-lined Tiger Beetle (Cicindela tranquebarica) 130

  2. -Long-necked Ground Beetle (Colliuris pensylvanica) 136

  3. -Scarab Beetle (Nipponoserica peregrina) 142 *      

  4. -Oriental Beetle (Anomala orientalis) 144

  5. -Grapevine Beetle (Pelidnota punctata) 144

  6. -Horned Passalus (Odontotaenius disjunctus) 148

  7. -Spotted Lady Beetle (Coleomegilla maculata) 156

  8. -Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle (Harmonia axyridis) 156

  9. -Eye-spotted Lady Beetle (Anatis mali) 158

  10. -Fourteen-spotted Lady Beetle (Propylea quatuordecimpunctata) 158

  11. -Mexican Bean Beetle (Epilachna varivestis) 158

  12. -Endomychus biguttatus) 158

  13. -False Potato Beetle (Leptinotarsa juncta)

  14. -Spotted Cucumber Beetle (Diabrotica undecimpunctata) 160

  15. -Swamp Milkweed Leaf Beetle (Labidomera clivicollis) 160

  16. -Striped Cucumber Beetle (Acalymma vittatum) *

  17. -Red lily leaf beetle (Lilioceris lilii)-164*

  18. -Fungus Beetle (Mycetophagus flexuosus)-166 *

  19. -Banded Net-wing (Calopteron reticulatum) 168

  20. -Sap-feeding Beetle (Prometopia sexmaculata) 168 *

  21. -Firefly (Photuris) 170

  22. -Diurnal Firefly (Ellychnia corrusca) 170

  23. -Black Firefly (Lucidota atra) 170

  24. -Goldenrod Soldier Beetle (Chauliognathus pensylvanicus) 172

  25. -Soldier Beetle (Atalantycha bilineata) 172

  26. -Soldier Beetle (Podabrus basillaris) (172) * #

  27. -Branch Pruner (Psyrassa unicolor) 174 *

  28. -Long-horned beetle (Graphisurus fasciatus) 176

  29. -Red Milkweek Beetle (Tetrapoes tetrophthalmus) 176

  30. -Strophiona nitens 178 *

  31. -Red Oak Borer (Enaphalodes rufulus) 180 #

  32. -Rustic Borer (Xylotrechus colonus) 182

  33. -Broad-necked Root Borer (Prionus laticollis) 184

  34. -Eyed Click Beetle (Alaus oculatus) 196

  35. -Oak Timberworm (Arrhenodes minutus) 218


LACEWINGS, ANTLIONS, DOBSONFLIES (220-227)     (5)

  1. -Brown Lacewing - Micromus posticus 222 *

  2. -Beaded Lacewing (Lomamyia) 222 *

  3. -Green Mantisfly (Zeugomantispa minuta) 222

  4. -Mantisfly (Dicromantispa sayi) 222

  5. -Gray Fishfly (Neohermes concolor) 224


BUTTERFLIES AND MOTHS (228-271)

See the menu (near top left of this page) for dedicated Butterfly Field Guide and Moth Field Guide or click the links here.


TRUE FLIES (272-317)                                     (12)

  1. -Lovebug (Plecia nearctica)

  2. -Tipula trivittata (Crane Fly ♀) 276*

  3. -Chrysops flavidus group 286 *

  4. -Black Horse Fly (Tabanus atratus) 284

  5. -Golden-backed Snipe Fly (Chrysopilus thoracicus) 286

  6. -Mydas Fly - Mydas Clavatus 294

  7. -Longlegged Flies (Dolichopodidae) » Sciapodinae 296

  8. -Yellowjacket Mimic (Emnostoma balyras) 298

  9. -Drone Fly (Eristalis tenax) 300

  10. -Transverse Flower Fly (Eristalis transverse)

  11. -Genus Lucilia 304 ?

  12. -Four-legged Fly (Trichopoda pennipes)


WASPS, BEES, ANTS (318-365)                          (187)

  1. -Blue-winged Wasp (Scolia dubia) 320

  2. -Genus Ophion Short-tailed Ichneumon Wasp 326 *?

  3. -Cuckoo Wasp-Genus Hedychrum 332

  4. -Great Golden Digger Wasp (Sphex ichneumoneus) 334

  5. -Black and Yellow Mud Dauber (Sceliphron caementarium) 334

  6. -Thread-waisted Wasp (Eremnophila aureonotata) 334

  7. -Solitary Wasp (Bicyrtes quadrifasciatus) 336

  8. -Bicolored Agapostemon (Agapostemon virescens) 340

  9. -Honey Bee (Apis mellifera) 346

  10. -Scoliid Wasp (Scolia dubia) 350

  11. -European Paper Wasp (Polistes dominula) 354

  12. -Northern Paper Wasp (Polistes fuscatus) 354

  13. -Mischocyttarus mexicanus cubicola 354 *

  14. -Red Wasp (Polistes carolina) 354

  15. -Eastern Yellowjacket Queen ♀ (Vepula maculifrons) 356

  16. -European Hornet (Vespa crabro)

  17. -Bald-faced Hornet (Dolichovespula maculata) 356

  18. -Four-toothed Mason Wasp (Monobia quadridens) 358






PLEASE NOTE!
This page is BRAND NEW and still under construction. There is a great deal of information yet to be added and formatting to be completed.

Unless otherwise noted, all photography and text on this page © Richard Wolfert, 2004-2017.

Photos NOT to scale.

Insect Resources

A Field Guide to

Do insects fascinate, scare or, simply annoy you? Are you noticing them with increasing frequency, not necessarily because there are more of them around you, but as a result of, perhaps…curiosity? Here are a few tantalizing facts. At any given time, there may be 10 quintillion insects alive on our planet. (That’s probably a conservative estimate.) More than 900,000 kinds of living insects are presently known. From the Smithsonian Institution’s Buginfo page:


  1. ”In the United States, the number of described species is approximately 91,000. The undescribed [sic] species of insects in the United States, however, is estimated at some 73,000. The largest numbers of described species in the U.S. fall into four insect Orders: Coleoptera (beetles) at 23,700, Diptera (flies) at 19,600, Hymenoptera (ants, bees, wasps) at 17,500, and Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies) at 11,500.”

If this ignites your curiosity a just a bit, welcome; you’re on the right webpage to help you begin to understand the overwhelming but compellingly fascinating subject of insects.

 

* Of course, and just to be fair, we will include all ‘bugs’ here, that is non-insect invertebrates (which include such things as spiders and other arachnids, centipedes, earwigs, springtails, etc.).

Website CONTENTS

(Click the page title below to see it.)

  1. BulletGIFT-GIVING PAGE

———————————

MOST VIEWED PAGES:

  1. BulletFRONT PAGE

  2. BulletBIRDS & BIRDING  

  3. Bullet    The Birds of Israel, 10/2013

  4. Bullet    RGVBF Texas Birding, 11/2014

  5. BulletWEATHER  

  6. BulletTRAVEL SECTION

  7. BulletTHE BACK PAGE 

———————————

  FIELD GUIDES: 1

  1. BulletBIRDS of NORTH AMERICA(415)

  2. BulletVol. 1 (1-161)      (82)

  3. BulletVol. 2 (166-406)    (72)

  4. BulletVol. 3 (407-571)    (79)

  5. BulletVol. 4 (572-791)    (83)

  6. BulletVol. 5 (792-994)    (99)

  7. BulletBUTTERFLIES (18)

  8. BulletDRAGON & DAMSELFLIES (27)

  9. BulletINSECTS (131)

  10. BulletMOTHS #s 0001-4702  

  11. BulletMOTHS #s 4703-7648 (490)

  12. BulletMOTHS #s 7649-12233  ——————————

OTHER PAGES:

  1. Bullet  ODDS & ENDS

  2. Bullet  SCRAPBOOK

  3. Bullet  SUBJECTS COVERED ON NJNN

  4. Bullet  SKY & SPACE

  5. Bullet  TICK PAGE

  6. 1 # of species

INSECTS FIELD GUIDE



The order of insect categories below is identical with the order (and page number) in the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. The numbers after each section heading (below) corresponds to the pages in the Kaufman Field Guide (2006 edition) where this insect will be found…if the species appears there. Otherwise, it will take you to the nearest related page. The blue text of the insect’s name will be the link to the appropriate bugguide.net information page.


  1. Not yet represented at the species level in the Kaufman Field Guide.

  2. ?Not ID’d on THIS page at the species level. If you can help, please click to contact us <––

  3. #Mentioned in the field guide but no photo available.