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Pretty bug, but is it an insect??

Discussion in 'Macro, Flowers, Insects, and Greenery' started by Flew, Jul 4, 2005.

  1. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    My wife spotting this guy while we were out working in the yard today, so I grabbed the D2H and the 70-200VR + 500D and got a couple of shots. I don't know what species it is. In fact, I don't see but 4 legs. I thought all insects had at least 6. :?

    In any case, it was very colorful. Anyone know what it is?


  2. Frank,
    I found it in my field guide.
    Ailanthrus webworm moth.
    Nice shot. I am glad that i have this combo as well, but I still find the 200mm micro set up is required in order to cover all of my macro shooting. I use a focusing rail and the 5T or 6T close up lenses to be able to handle most any macro need.
  3. Dave is right, although it is called Ailanthus (no "r") w. m., or Atteva punctella (Family Yponomeutidae or Ermine moths, with about 800 species world-wide). The larvae can cover entire bushes with their "web".

    The common name is a bit misleading, though as its larvae originally were surely feeding on some native American plant and just jumped over to the "Ailanthus" tree after it was introduced from Asia.

    It only shows 4 legs because the front pair is hidden. Many moths and butterflies have the tendency to modify their front legs, various reductions are the result.

    Anyway, nice pic.

  4. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    Thanks for the ID and info Dave and Harry. I was hoping one of our resident experts would jump in with an answer.

    Dave, what field guide do you have that helped you identify this fellow?

    Thanks again.
  5. Audobon field guide (Knopf)
  6. Flew


    Jan 25, 2005
    Thanks again Dave. :wink:
  7. The Audobon guides are excellent. When my wife returned from her post-doc in Canada she brought the mushroom version. If the other guides are of similar quality then they are unrivalled, unless you buy some very special monographs which are usually legible only to specialists :) 
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