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Discussion in 'Insects, Other Invertebrates & Arthropods' started by Galapoheros, Jul 12, 2019 at 4:13 AM.
Thought I would post a few things from east Texas I found when I was over there.
Beautiful!! The velvet ants are gorgeous...I found some last year but no luck collecting. Peter at BICSsent me some though. I didn’t know that native phasmids got that massive!
Gorgeous! I had no idea the US had native stick insects!
Here's your phasmid - https://bugguide.net/node/view/85378
@Andrea82 yep, 29 species! You can look through them here - https://bugguide.net/node/view/74/bgpage
Then why the heck do people import illegal species?? I always thought that was because there were no stick/leaf insects in the US.
Looking at the pics from your link;there's more than enough fun species to keep!
the velvet ants are two different species
the one with all red and only black on the abdomen tip is D. bioculata, the other one is D. occidentalis- cowkiller
I believe there are rules about species crossing state lines and being moved from their native ranges, so it ends up being a bit of a wash, though there are native phasmids in most states. I'd have to look through the pics on BugGuide, but they may include a couple non-native species in there as well.
@Andrea82, people like the exotic species for their colors and behaviors (most US natives are a drab brown or green), their surprising availability (US native species are difficult to find in the wild to the untrained eye, and are almost never offered for sale, while species like E. tiaratum can be found at reptile shows and online with surprising regularity), and by the fact that once they are in the US, APHIS stops looking for them it seems (please, I know APHIS does still keep an eye out and that because their here doesn't mean it's "legal" to keep them, so let's not have another drawn out discussion on their legality). At least that is what I've seen.
Amazing velvet ants ! Did you find these two females in the same spot?
Yeah I found them about 10' apart. If you're interested in where, in an area between Navasota and Hempstead Texas. Sometimes the megaphasma are pea-green like this one and in other areas they are bright green, the bright green ones look bigger to me just because of the color. I think I've seen some brown ones too, I guess it depends on the local veg, what works better.
Here's one I found in the Austin Tx area, a male I think, same sps?
Cowkiller... Is that a cute common name, or referring to the severity of a bite?
Edit: never mind, googled it. It's not a cute common name
Nope. I mean, obviously it won't actually kill a cow, but it will sure as hell teach you to shake out your boots before you put them on
Crazy cute though, I love keeping them when I come across them.
Because most people are only able to find one or two small sticklike species and it's actually a lot easier to find someone selling or giving away Extatosoma, Eurycantha, Heteropteryx, Phyllium etc. than someone who'll ship you another tiny sticklike phasmid from another part of the country.
This question is rather like asking why anyone would keep tarantulas when there are plenty of native spiders in any given region. Not that smaller spiders aren't cool, but tarantulas have an obvious appeal radically different from anything I could find in the woods here.
Yeah I think it's the same species. Female too. Males have weird looking claspers - https://bugguide.net/node/view/1687909/bgimage
When velvet ants stridulate.
Those are some great looking velvet ants and stick bugs
Dang the megaphasma took me by surprise!!!