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Five Banded Thynnid Wasp

Scientific Name: Myzinum quinquecinctum

Family: Thynnidae

Native Range: East and Central United States, Pennsylvania

Size: 16–22 mm (0.63 – 0.87 in)

Active: Late spring – fall

Color and Appearance: “Both genders have the wings darkened evenly overall. Males have brown tinted wings. Females have orange tinted wings. Females have red antennae, including the flagellum. Sometimes you can see yellow coloring on the scape.”*

*From BugGuide.net (https://bugguide.net/node/view/109316)

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Blue-Winged Scoliid Wasp

Scientific Name: Scolia dubia

Family: Scoliidae

Native Range: Eastern and Central United States to the Rocky Mountains, Pennsylcania*

Size: Length: 20 – 25 mm (0.8–1.0 in)*

Active: Summer and early fall*

Color and Appearance: “The head, thorax, and first two abdominal segments are black, while the remainder of the abdomen is red with two bright yellow spots on the third abdominal segment.”*

*From Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scolia_dubia)

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Winter Firefly

Scientific Name: Ellychnia corrusca

Family: Ellychnia

Native Range: Eastern United States, Pennsylvania

Size: Length: 10-14 mm (0.39 – 0.55 in)

Active: Mating season in spring, adults overwinter, having developed into young adults in the fall

Color and Appearance: Largest diurnal species in the east

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Rabid Wolf Spider

Scientific Name: Rabidosa rabida

Family: Lycosidae

Native Range: Eastern and Central United States, Pennsylvania

Size:  Female: 16 to 21 mm (0.63 – 0.83 in); Male: 11 to 12 mm (0.43 – 0.47 in)*

Active:

Color and Appearance: “The ground color is yellow, with brownish to black longitudinal stripes. In this species, the median dark band of the abdomen is broken and encloses lighter areas. The male has leg I dark brown or black. The venter is not spotted.”*

*From BugGuide.net (https://bugguide.net/node/view/26084)

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Wolf Spiders

Family: Lycosidae

Native Range: Worldwide, Pennsylvania

Size: Varies

Active:

Color and Appearance:

August 16, 2020: Wolf spiders are a common family of spiders in our area. I notice them most because they are devoted mothers. Females carry their egg sacks with them attached to their spinnerettes. Ian and I first became aware of wolf spiders while visiting our pool when he was four. We saw a brown spider with lots of tiny bumps on her back near one of the pool drains. When we got home, I Googled the image and discovered that she was a wolf spider with her babies riding on her back. Ian looked at the picture and said, “Look Mama! She was taking her babies to the pool, just like you take me.”

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Short-Winged Green Grasshopper

Scientific Name:  Dichromorpha viridis

Family: Acrididae 

Native Range: Eastern United States including eastern Great Plains, Pennsylvania*

Size: Male: 14-22 mm (0.55 – 0.87 in); Female: 23-30 mm (0.91 – 1.18 in)*

Active: Summer – early fall*

Color and Appearance: “Female coloration is usually uniform, either brown or green. Males have two common color forms, green on upper surface and brown on sides, or light brown upper surface and dark brown sides. Forewings are usually very short, but long-winged individuals do occur. Elegant Grasshopper, D. elegans, is similar, found along east coast. D. viridis has two sulci (grooves) on pronotum, D. elegans just one. D. elegans is also said to have a larger head than D. viridis.”*

From BugGuide.net (https://bugguide.net/node/view/9031)

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Long Legged Fly

Scientific Name: Condylostylus patibulatus

Family: Dolichopodidae

Native Range: Eastern United States and Southern Canada, Pennsylvania*

Size: Really small

Active:

Color and Appearance: “Green body, black legs, black antennae, face with pale hairs, segments 2-4 of fore tarsi similar (female) or 2-3 short and 4 longer (male). Fore basitarsus of male with row of bristles on outside. In the Northeast, no other species has black legs and marked wings.”*

*From BugGuide.net (https://bugguide.net/node/view/478773)

August 16, 2020: Condylostylus patibulatus are really small. Really small. And fast. And skittish. BugGuide.net notes that they are among the more common flies in the Northeast and one of the first to be described in scientific literature. They are also common in our yard as tiny, brightly zooming specks. Photographs of them are inevitably blurry and frequently do not show the insect, because he or she has flown off before the shutter closed.

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Common Picture-Winged Fly

Scientific Name: Delphinia picta

Family: Ulidiidae

Native Range: Eastern United States, Pennsylvania

Size: 7 – 9 mm (0.28 – 0.35 in)*

Active: 2 generations per year: Adults active in late spring – summer. Next generation overwinters a larva. (Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delphinia_picta_

Color and Appearance: “Wing pattern apparently distinctive, with two white triangles on front edge. Moves wings in rowing motion as it walks.”*

*From BugGuide.net (https://bugguide.net/node/view/5919)

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Thornbush Dasher

Scientific Name: Micrathyria hagenii

Family: Libellulidae

Native Range: North and Central America and the Carribbean

Size:

Active:

Color and Appearance:

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Restless Bush Cricket

Scientific Name: Hapithus agitator

Family: Gryllidae

Native Range: Eastern United States

Size: Length: 9-14 mm (0.35 – 0.55 in)*

Active: August – October*

Color and Appearance: Brown; “forewings cover 3/4 or more of abdomen”*

*From BugGuide.net (https://bugguide.net/node/view/6965)

August 10, 2020: I observed the restless bush cricket beside the raspberry canes while I was weed-whacking the grass nearby. She was sitting on yarrow and then climbed onto a leaf of Asiatic dayflower on the way to the safety of the raspberry patch.