What is this?

Mystery insect - What on earth is it?

Mystery insect - What on earth is it?

Folks I really need your help to identify this bug which I almost stood on today! I say almost, because when I spotted it just below my foot as I was about to go up some steps I nearly jumped 20′ in the air in terror. Now as you can imagine from my name, I’m not built for either speed or gymnastics moves. However, it never ceases to amaze me the incredible feats the human body will perform when pushed!

This insect is about 2½ inches-ish long from the tip of its antennae to its feet. The body is about 1 inch long and resembles a genetically modified wasp, but with no wings. You will have to trust me on the measurements or best “guestimates” because unlike my photo of the stag beetle I was not about to attempt placing a euro coin anywhere near it as a benchmark.

The shape of its legs and absence of wings is alarming as it probably jumps! I hate bugs that jump; they are so unpredictable!

Once I’d regained my composure Mr. Piglet was immediately despatched to get my camera. Luckily for me it has a zoom lens and motion control for shaky moments such as these. Even luckier was the fact the bug, who I have since named Harold, was not camera-shy nor in any apparent hurry to be elsewhere. That is, until hoping to scare Harold off, I grabbed the hose and doused him with water. Unimpressed, Harold crawled off to take refuge in some nearby rocks giving me a backward glance as he did so. Yikes, I am a marked woman!

I wonder if my mate Lenny the Lizard will eat him, I hope so!

He spotted me with the water hose and scuttled off into the rocks!

He spotted me with the water hose and scuttled off into the rocks!

Related posts: “Ugly Bug Ball” Insects in my garden

More bugs in my garden

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56 responses to “What is this?

  1. I think it looks like a Weta-something found in New Zealand and Australia. If you have seen the newer King Kong-Peter Jackson monsterfied them in one of the scenes.

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  2. Meh, it’s just a baby, what you want to be worried about are the rest of the full sized alien overlords who want to take over the planet. It seems they’ve picked Portugal as their starting point for their invasion!

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    • Actually, Henry does look like he may have landed from another planet! Perhaps we should write a story about him!
      Having said that, the height I jumped when I nearly stood on him, I was almost the first woman to land on the moon!

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  3. Eek! I don’t like Harold. Sorry!

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  4. he looks too much like a cockroach for me to like harold. i would have run away screaming, and i am not really like that usually! i hope the lizard gets him! 🙂

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  5. Cockroach is my call too. Google them, they are not nice to have in the house.

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  6. I looked it up, and I think it’s a common house cricket. They’re pretty harmless, but also pretty big and ugly! They like crevices and warm places, and are more active the warmer they are. I’d hate to find one inside my house!

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  7. Harold looks like a cockroach with a stinger. Weird. But I like your storybook idea!

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  8. It does look like a cricket to me. Have a look, here’s the link to wikipedea http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cricket_(insect)

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  9. Just checked him out and it looks like it could be a female tree weta – what do you think?

    Image courtesy of Tony Willis (wickipedia)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Tree_weta.jpg

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  10. Looks like have cricket or grasshopper and maybe a cockroach? Ewww Keep it over there! LMAO

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  11. This is an African Cricket. Looks like it has 2 pointy bits at the back not one.

    African Field Cricket

    African Field Cricket

    image courtesy of wikipedia

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  12. Iehw, scary! Unfortunately I cannot help you with your quest for the scary insect…

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  13. I’m gonna vote for some sort of cricket – “Crickets, family Gryllidae (also known as “true crickets”), are insects somewhat related to grasshoppers, and more closely related to katydids or bush crickets (family Tettigoniidae). They have somewhat flattened bodies and long antennae. There are about 900 species of crickets. They tend to be nocturnal and are often confused with grasshoppers because they have a similar body structure including jumping hind legs. Crickets are harmless to humans.” Wikipedia

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  14. Hi Piglet .It’s one of the cricket species,when it rains, sometimes at night you can hear a “shrill” clicking sound really loud coming from your garden ,it’s these guy’s, the males dig in ,leaving 2 holes that act like trumpets & he sit’s at the bottom vibrating the back legs againts his wing casings calling for a female.
    I got to be honest I like them ,except at 3 in the morning

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  15. It looks like a cricket to me. You were more scared of him, than him of you for sure! You should see the quantity of flying and non-flying bugs I see around my garden and house…I don´t even know what they are or do. Scary sometimes!!

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  16. My goodness! The comments are rolling in on this faster than a swarm of cockroaches . . . or crickets! 😀

    Whatever it is, I’m glad you didn’t step on it, or sustain injury when it startled you.

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  17. Hi Les,
    here is the picture

    mole cricket

    mole cricket

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  18. My ,my, my, that is a creepy critter. I hope Lenny takes advantage of such a luscious meal as Harold would be. I’ve no idea what he is, but figure he may be a species of cricket… or not… lol it’ll be interesting to see what he really is.
    I really enjoyed your fun mystery post. 🙂

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  19. Hi EC,
    Harold was on one of my plants closer to the house this evening. I was sipping a glass of wine when I spotted him.
    Another curious point is, having discovered I can add pictures to my comments, why are they then encroaching on other posters comments…looks strange! Another mystery!

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  20. idalina da silva

    this is not a bug…. this is a “grilo”, or should i say a cricket! dont kill him… poor little thing. I remember childhood stories about Sr. Grilo… keep him under the rocks… when is very hot he will sing to you …:) hugs from Canada!

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  21. Yuck! I an definitely not a bug person!

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  22. It looks like a cricket to me PiP… albeit one that has transmogrified into something a bit more exotic… It’s a cricket. 😉

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  23. I’ve absolutely no idea what it is but what I really want to know is why you called it Harold? And Lenny the Lizard – my brother in law is called Lenny, not sure I can look at him in the same way now….hope you find out what it is anyhow.

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    • LOL I have no Idea why I called it Harold. I suppose humungous Harold sprang to mind when I was in mid flight. As for Lenny, Lenny is rather a cute name and just seemed to fit the lizard. Albert would not have had quite the same ring to it! We also have Garry the gheko and his family – these are long term residents.

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  24. PiP, it definitly looks some sort of cricket to me too, but something from the alien force ! Getting off medications can really upscale your thoughts and imagination ! 🙂

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  25. PiP, I don’t have a clue as to Harold’s identity. I’m just impressed with your storytelling skills, your capacity to always remember you are a blogger and ability to put that camera to such good use. Thanks for giving me a smile!

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  26. STOP PRESS
    Harold is no more!
    Mr Piglet has just found him dead on the terrace …sob sob… 😦

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  27. Noooo, he’s still alive. Or at least Harold’s family is.
    Look what I wrote today, and what my readers came up with. The name of the insect and a link to your site!
    http://drieskewrites.wordpress.com/2012/05/05/bug-doe-help-needed-to-identify-unknown-insect/

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  28. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: Today | Piglet in Portugal

  29. Think its a mole cricket, we found a BIG black beetle 2in wide 3 in wide!!!!!!! with abig horn on its head in a bag of peat I RAN! it was Horrible!!!!

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  30. Think its a mole cricket, we found a BIG black beetle 2in wide 3 in wide!!!!!!! with abig horn on its head in a bag of peat I RAN! it was Horrible!!!! sorry LOng!

    Like

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