Home Field and Swamp: Animals and Their Habitats

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Common Brown Invertebrates

Most insects and spiders are solid brown. It wouldn't be practical to put them all here. So I will put my favorites here and direct you to a page that emphasizes shape and other characteristics   Go back to color/pattern menu:    

Weevil (Curculio proboscideus), Durham, NC, 8/9/10.  About 2 inches long including the proboscis.  See other beetles. Broad-nosed Weevil (Naupactus genus), Greenville, Pitt County, NC, 9/20/08.  ID thanks to Eric E. Eaton Warty Leaf Beetle (Neochlamisus gibbosus, Chlamisini tribe, Cryptocephalinae subfamily), Durham, NC, 5/10/08.  Although most insects (and some treefrogs) seem to mimic dead leaves, this beetle is typically confused with caterpillar droppings, but only when it tucks its legs under it and lies motionless! Longhorn beetle (Parelaphidion aspersum), Durham, NC, 5/22/09.  ID thanks to v. belov, with confirmation from Michael Thomas. A very large nocturnal beetle, over 2 inches long. Case-bearer beetle larva, Durham, NC, 6/17/07.  You can just barely see the little legs near the bottom. One-spotted Tiger Beetle (Cicindela unipunctata), Haw River State Park, Guilford & Rockingham Counties, NC, 5/31/08.  One little white spot on each side, but definitely an identifying mark!          


Carolina Satyr Butterfly (Hermeuptychia sosybius), Mason Farm Biological Reserve, Orange County, NC, 5/21/06 Common Ringlet (Coenonympha tullia), Camp Taylor, Marin County, CA, 8/4/07 Elongate Long-jawed Orb Weaver,
Durham, NC, 8/21/09


Flat-faced Long-horned Beetle (Aegomorphus genus, subfamily Lamiinae), Durham, 7/1/06 Long-jointed Beetle (Arthromacra aenea, subfamily Lagriinae), a darkling beetle.  The park was full of these beetles. Dung Beetle (Canthon imitator), Carolina Beach State Park, New Hanover County, NC, 5/13/10 Scarab beetle (Onthophagus hecate hecate) , Durham, NC, 8/13/07.   The pronotal horn is distinctive.  ID thanks to Will Merritt. An unidentified member (Rose Chafer?) of the Shining Leaf Chafer Beetle subfamily (Rutelinae), probably more worn than a typical member of this species. Johnston Mill Nature Preserve, Orange County, NC, 6/16/07 American Cockroach (Periplaneta americana), Winston-Salem, Forsyth County, NC, 7/31/06          

Click beetle (Agriotes genus), Johnston Mill Nature Preserve, Orange County, NC, 6/16/07. Only a few mm long. Seed bug (Pseudopachybrachius basalis, Myodochini tribe, Rhyparochrominae subfamily,  Rhyparochromidae family, Lygaeoidea superfamily), on cattail leaf.  The genus name refers to its fat forelegs (literally, fake elephant arms). Very tiny, about 3-4 mm long.  The unpoetic common name is less easily explained. Female Carolina Mantis, on boardwalk, Ft. Fisher Basin Trail, New Hanover County, NC, 10/15/09.  It's smaller than the Praying Mantis, which in turn is smaller than the Chinese Mantis. Fishfly (family Corydalidae, order Megaloptera), Durham, NC, 6/8/07.  This is a relatively large insect, up to 2 inches long. Barklouse nymph (Liposcelididae family, Nanopsocetae infraorder, Troctomorpha suborder) was less than 1 mm long.  ID according to Marshall (2006), p. 159        

Many female damselflies look like this.  Alas, it evades further identification. Fawn Darner (Boyeria vinosa), Penny's Bend Natural Area, Durham County, NC, 9/20/05 Northern Walkingstick (Diapheroma femorata, Family Heteronemiidae), Little Scaly Mountain, Macon County, NC, 8/10/05.  This large predatory insect was about 6 inches long. Common Stonefly (perhaps Agnetina flavescens, Perlidae family, Plecoptera order).  One antennae was truncated.  Johnston Mill Nature Preserve, Orange County, NC, 6/24/09        


Worker termites (Reticulotermes flavipes, Rhinotermitidae family, Isoptera order), Cox Mountain, Eno River State Park, Orange County, NC, 10/21/07, found under a log.  They were very tiny, less than 2 mm long. Soldier termite, Johnston Mill Nature Preserve, Orange County, NC, 3/14/08 Green Lacewing (genus Chrysoperla, family Chrysopidae, order Neuroptera), Durham on  12/12/08.  Adult wing pattern and shape, not color, distinguishes the Green Lacewing from the Brown Lacewing. Treehopper (Campylenchia latipes), Occoneechee Mountain, Orange County, NC, 10/4/07. Treehopper (Entylia carinata), Durham, NC, 5/10/08        


Copyright © 2010 by Dorothy E. Pugh.  All rights reserved.  Please contact for rights to use photos.

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