University of Kentucky Department of Entomology

Mystery Bug Answers

 
Mystery Picture #28

Mystery Picture #28

(Mystery Pictures)(Mystery Pictures)
NoviceExpert

Novice

The Head Louse is a bloodsucking insect that lives exclusively on humans. It usually infests only the head, preferring the nape of the neck and the area behind the ears. It is especially common on schoolchildren between the ages of three and ten. Examination of the hair and scalp will usually reveal the white or grayish crawling forms (about the size of a sesame seed) and yellowish white eggs(nits) attached to the hair shafts close to the scalp.

Head lice are featured in our Bug Alert! section.


Expert

The Saddleback Caterpillar is covered with stinging hairs. Stings by this insect can cause severe irritation. The caterpillar is brown in front and rear, green in the middle with a purple spot in the center of the green saddle. There are prominent horns on the front and rear. They are typically found on deciduous trees such as basswood, chestnut, cherry, oak, and plum, but occasionally they can be found on corn.

To read more about the saddleback caterpillar and other stinging caterpillars, see EntFact 003, Stinging Caterpillars.


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This page is maintained by Pat Dillon, Department of Entomology, University of Kentucky. Please send questions or suggestions to: pdillon@uky.edu