Entomology (Study of Bugs)/What is it?


My son found this insect on the river in Mandan ND. I have never seen one like it. Can you help a guy out as to what it is? Thanks!

Dear Erik - This is one of the so-called dog-day or annual cicadas; trhey usually emerge in late summer rather than late spring/early summer as in the periodical (13- and 17-year) cicadas. Although they usually have a three-year life cycle, some emerge every year, which is why they are called 'annual.' Yours appears to be in the genus Tibicen; possibly Tibicen pronotalis - see http://tinyurl.com/ompcabx for an image.

Hope this helps,

p.s. - I am quite familiar with this area, I was born in Bismarck, and still have friends there...

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Ed Saugstad


Will accept most questions in general entomology, including those related to medical entomology, taxonomy, ecology, arthropod surveillance, and pest management. If you are requesting a 'mystery bug' identification, PLEASE either attach an image to your question, or post an image on a web page (such as Flickr) so that I can look at it, as verbal descriptions frequently are insufficient for a definitive identification.


21 years in the U.S. Army as a medical entomologist; duties varied from surveillance of pest populations (including mosquitoes, cockroaches, ticks, and stored products pests) to conducting research on mosquito-virus ecological relationships and mosquito faunal studies. Ten years as a civilian analyst for the Department of Defense, primarily on distribution of vector-borne diseases worldwide. Limited experience on surveillance of agricultural insects in North Dakota and Indiana.

Entomological Society of America, West Virginia Entomological Society, Society for Vector Ecology, National Speleological Society, West Virginia Association for Cave Studies.

American Journal of Public Health, Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, Japanese Journal of Sanitary Zoology, Journal of Economic Entomology, Mosquito News, and Mosquito Systematics.

B.S. in entomology from North Dakota State University in 1963, M.S. in entomology from Purdue University in 1967.

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