The Bug Geek

Insects. Doing Science. Other awesome, geeky stuff.


25°C!  Sunshine!  Warm breezes!  Shorts!  Flip-flops!  Back porch with deck chairs and cold beer! Baths for dogs with the garden hose!  Sunburn!  BUGS (moths, beetles, flies, wasps, hoppers, oh my)!!!!!  All in my own backyard!    Holy uncharacteristically warm first weekend of April, Batman!   I am going camera-ing at the Bird Sanctuary tomorrow.  All day.  WOOT!!!

And now, in the interest of a reprieve from overuse of exclamation marks, I present a lovely Pine Weevil, Pissodes nemorensis (Curculionidae), which I have never encountered before:

Why are snout beetles are so gosh-darned cute? I think it's because they look like Muppets.

Check out the cool row of white scale spots on the thorax

A really pretty beetle - even if it IS pesty to pines

6 responses to “Hot!

  1. peteryeeles April 3, 2010 at 7:59 AM

    HA! They DO look like muppets! It’s Gonzo! I’d never thought of that before.

    That weevil obviously has been sitting still too long. Lichens growing all over him…

    It’s actually quite a coincidence you posting a photo of a pine weevil. I read a paper about a model which is hoped will help estimate their potential range a few days ago, and I had to google to find out what one looked like.

    • TGIQ April 3, 2010 at 7:07 PM

      Ha. I had the same thought about the lichens…wonderful camo, huh?

      I guess this species is pretty pesty…when I googled to get some info on host plants, a number of “Quarantine Pest”-type pages popped up. Is it widespread?

  2. Ted C. MacRae April 4, 2010 at 10:11 AM

    I think these are primarily pests in Christmas tree plantations, where cut stumps keep the population reservoir high. I don’t think healthy trees in the forest suffer much from them.

    Try finding one on the trunk of a living pine, and you’ll appreciate how well camoflauged they are!

  3. Joy K. April 4, 2010 at 11:46 AM

    The circle of little white spots is clearly a row of tiny tiny rivets, intended to keep the head from falling off.

    (At work, where I teach science to 5th grade kids, it’s vital that I be cautious with stuff like this, lest an offhand smart-aleck remark be taken seriously. “Mrs. K. said that there’s these bugs with heads that are nailed on! Hey mom? Why are you calling the superintendent of schools?”)

    • TGIQ April 5, 2010 at 9:37 PM

      Clearly that is what they are intended for. Clearly.

      You know, I do this all the time with kids without thinking about the consequences (I guess I think I’m funny). I was hanging out with my 3 year old nephew on the weekend, and we walked by a fire station and were invited in. He pointed out the water tanker and named it “That’s the tanker!”. The fire fighter agreed and said yes, it was for holding water. “And milk!” adds the boy.

      Eh. Heh. Sorry ’bout that, Mr. Firefighter, sir. My bad. A YEAR ago I was goofing around with the kid’s picture book on trucks and got off on this weird “milk” thing. He laughed hysterically every time I said “milk”, so I said the tanker truck was filled with milk. Seems he didn’t forget. Oops.

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