Entomology (Study of Bugs)/mystery bug


Mystery Bug
Mystery Bug  
I found this in Columbus, Ohio. It's about an inch in diameter with the legs, rather tall, and really fast. I can't figgure out what it is.

Hi, Phil:

Thank you for including the image with your question.

The insect is a nymph (immature, juvenile, "baby") Wheel Bug, Arilus cristatus , one of the assassin bugs in the family Reduviidae.  Here's the blog post I did on this species:


The species is not that common in Ohio, in my experience (I lived in Cincinnati for eleven years and only saw a handful).


Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Eric R. Eaton


I answer insect and spider identification questions ONLY. Attach images if possible. No "what bit me?", "what do I feed this bug in captivity?", or science fair project questions please. NO TECHNICAL QUESTIONS ABOUT INSECT PHYSIOLOGY.


Principal author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Professional entomologist employed previously at University of Massachusetts, Chase Studio, Inc., and Cincinnati Zoo; contract work for West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Smithsonian Institution, and Portland (Oregon) State University.

Author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Missouri Conservationist magazine, Ranger Rick, Birds & Blooms, Timeline (journal of the Ohio Historical Society). I have contributed to several books as well.

Oregon State University, undergraduate major in entomology, did not receive degree.

Awards and Honors
One of the top 50 experts in all categories for AllExperts.com, 2009.

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Principal author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Smithsonian Institution (contract), Cincinnati Zoo (employer), Portland State University (contract), Chase Studio, Inc (employer), Arkansas Museum of Discovery (guest speaker). Currently seeking speaking engagements, leadership roles at nature festivals, workshops, and ecotours.

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