Well folks, the Mondrian Bug may have a name. I saw it first on Garden337 .
Then out in my garden on the same day was the Mondrian Bug. Pretty little guy, so I snapped a photo. He happily posed with a bumblebee and a lady bug. My kinda artsy image is below. Looks like a studio shot with poor lighting, but was taken in my garden in the early afternoon.
I wrote a comment to Garden 337 to let her know that I too had seen a Mondrian Bug in my yard and was checking with Cornell Cooperative Extension, here in New York, to get the real ID of this critter. Sadly she did not reply to my comment, but I still was interested, as was another reader who also left a comment, Meredith, from The Enchanted Earth.
The extension leader and horticulturist, John, had sent my photo, below, of the Piet Mondrian Bug to Cornell University, and an entomologist named Mike wrote back a quick reply .
Here is a website that Mike provided with the bug shown, who apparently is not a bug at all. Who would have guessed this is a webworm moth? He gets his name from his food, the ailanthus, or invasive Tree of Heaven which looks a lot like the sumac plant so common to our area, here in Western New York.
Ailanthus Webworm Moth, My Photo Sent to Cornell
Here are images of the Ailanthus altissima tree that I researched and found on Google. The image showing the tree form really has the appearance of another genus all together, the Rhus typhina or stag’s horn sumac.
All you need to know and more on the ailanthus webworm moth, is on this website. The site takes a little time to load because it is a reference library.
I found many photos online of the ailanthus webworm moth after I Googled the plant. But I also noticed many of the images had been taken with the subject on Phlox paniculata. Guess they have another favorite host plant as well. Above is a clear close-up that I found. The markings look like flowers to me, but I am sure they are a design to ward off predators, and not be another bird or bugs next meal.
The image to the left is found and credited here.
I also found many species names for the moth, Yponomeutoidea, Ermine moth.
I have no way of knowing if this information that I found is correct, but the different names have a reference to whether it is a Costa Rica insect or one found in North America. Seems to me if it is actually all the same insect, I should have found only one name. Any entomologists out there?
- atteva pustulella
- attevinae punctella
- atteva aurea
I was in Costa Rica with the University in 1995. I now remember seeing this moth and many others, all colorful and unique. The lepidoptera found in that country is astonishing. And the hummingbirds, and the plants, and the animals and on and on and on…