Content tagged with "Insects, Spiders and Kin"

Foliage Flower Spiders

Photo of a swift crab spider, female.
Mecaphesa spp. and Misumessus spp.
The more obvious differences between foliage crab spiders and other flower crab spiders is that these generally are smaller, and their carapaces, abdomens, and legs are spiny. More

Funnel Web Spiders

Photo of funnel web spider poised in funnel of her web
Agelenopsis spp.
The unique web of this group of spiders is more often noticed than the spider itself. It is sheetlike, usually positioned horizontally, with a funnel leading downward to a shelter (a rock crevice or dense vegetation) where the spiders hides, waiting for prey. More

Giant Red-Headed Centipede

Image of a giant red-headed centipede.
Scolopendra heros
The bright colors of this centipede have a message for you: Handle with great care! It’s of the few centipedes in our state capable of inflicting a painful, venomous bite. More

Giant Water Bugs

Photo of a giant water bug
Species in the genera Abedus, Belostoma, and Lethocerus
These huge aquatic bugs, which frequently fly around electric lights at night, are infamous for the painful bite they can deliver, but fish, birds—and some people—find them tasty! More

Great Black Wasp

Photo of a great black wasp on a bindweed flower
Sphex pensylvanicus
A strikingly large black wasp with smoky-black wings that shine with blue iridescence, the great black wasp is often seen busily eating nectar and pollen from flowers in summertime. More

Great Golden Digger Wasp

Image of a great golden digger wasp.
Sphex ichneumoneus
A large solitary wasp, the great golden digger wasp is found throughout Missouri. The abdomen is orange in front and black at the end. The head and thorax have golden hairs. Like all solitary wasps, this species is not aggressive. More

Green June Beetle

image of Green June Beetle on Goldenrod
Cotinis nitida
These large, metallic green beetles buzz loudly when they fly. Attracted to ripe and rotting fruit and compost piles, the green June beetle is a common type of scarab beetle in Missouri. More

Green Lacewings

image of Green Lacewing clinging to rock
About 85 species in North America north of Mexico
Green lacewings are delicate insects whose larvae are ravenous predators of aphids. This makes the lacewing a friend to gardeners! More

Ground Beetles

image of Fiery Searcher on dead leaves
About 2,400 species in North America north of Mexico
Ground beetles are mostly nocturnal or light-shunning beetles that tend to be shiny black and have grooved wing covers. This group also includes tiger beetles, however, which includes many colorful daytime fliers. More


Image of a honeybee worker.
Apis mellifera
In 1985, the honeybee was made Missouri's official state insect, and most people know how to identify it. This social insect is unquestionably a friend to humanity and has been for millennia. Today, more than ever, we rely on honeybees to pollinate our crops, as well as for the sweet honey that only they can make. More