Category Archives: Insect Arachnid

Red Lily Beetle Invades Alberta

I normally do not use pesticides at my place. I’m fairly tolerant of anything Mother Nature invites into my back yard. So, in 2011, when some pretty, bright red, unspotted beetles showed up on my lilies, I welcomed them. There was no question that their intent was to eat the lily leaves, but I had […]
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Bald-faced Hornet

Bug Bits Common Name: Bald-faced Hornet Scientific Name: Dolichovespula maculata Linnaeus Native to: Throughout North America Date Seen: August 2013 Location: North East of Calgary, Alberta Notes: This is not a true hornet – it is more closely related to yellow jackets. They have striking black and white markings and are a large size. They […]
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Crane Fly

Bug Bits Name: Crane Fly Family: Tipulidae Native to: Crane Flies are found throughout the world, though individual species may have a limited range. Date Seen: July 2016 Location: North of Calgary, Alberta, Canada Notes: A Crane Fly has a pair of membranous wings, large compound eyes, and very long legs. Many types of Crane […]
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Bee Fly – a Pollinator and a Predator

Did you know that over 925,000 species of insects have been identified? Entomologists believe this is only 20% of the total number of insect species in the world. While all insects play in important role in the life cycle of something, the most prolific ones seem to be the ones that are simply a pain […]
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Harvestman – Looks Like a Spider, But Isn’t

We always called these daddy longleg spiders, but they aren’t spiders! Arachnids – yes. Spiders – no. I only figured this out today when I did the research for this post. They aren’t even the only critters that are called daddy longlegs – cellar spiders and craneflies are called that too. Bug Bits Name:  Harvestman […]
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Anise Swallowtail Butterfly

Bug Bits Name: Anise Swallowtail Butterfly Species: Papilio zelicaon Native to: Western North America Date Seen: May 2012 Location: Southern Alberta Notes: A large butterfly – 52 to 80 mm (2.0 to 3.1 in) similar in color to the Canadian Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly – except quite different when you look more carefully!

Canadian Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly

The Flutter Files Name: Canadian Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly Species: Papilio canadensis Native to: All Canadian Provinces and Northern U.S. States Date Seen: June 2013 Location: Southern Alberta Notes: Large (53mm to 80mm; 2.07in to 3.12in) bright Butterflies with a furry black and yellow body.

Dragonflies and Damselflies

Bug Bits Name: Dragonflies and Damselflies Order: Odonata Native to: There are about 50 species of dragonflies and damselflies in Alberta. Date Seen: 2012 to 2016 Location: Alberta Notes: Both are long, narrow insects that are brightly coloured. They have small antennae, large eyes, and six legs located near their head. Two pairs of wings […]
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Painted Lady Butterfly – Arizona

The Flutter Files Name: Painted Lady Butterfly Species: Vanessa cardui Native to: Found on most continents (except Australia and Antarctica) in many climates. Date Seen: November 2016, October 2016 Location: North of Fountain Hills, Arizona Notes: An irruptive migrant – migrates independent of any seasonal or geographic patterns.

Empress Leilia Butterfly

The Flutter Files Name: Empress Leilia Butterfly Species: Asterocampa leilia Native to: Central and southern Arizona (except for the southwest) as well as south Texas, Mexico and Baja Date Seen: March 2014 Location: North of Fountain Hills, Arizona Notes: Wing Span: 1 1/2 – 3 inches (3.8 – 7.6 cm). This butterfly was sitting on […]
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