Other Common Names
Doodlebugs (larvae, esp. Myrmeleon)
Explanation of Names
Myrmeleontidae Latreille 1802
94 spp. in 18 genera in our area(1)(2)
adult body length 40-80 mm
Antennae fairly short (about the length of the head and thorax combined), clubbed, and often curved at the tip somewhat like a field hockey stick. Wings transparent, mottled with brown and black.
Larvae are voracious predators that lie in wait for their insect prey under sand or loose soil. Myrmeleon
spp. (known as "doodlebugs") are most frequently noticed--they dig a shallow pit in loose sand to trap prey. Members of some other genera live in tree holes.
adults mostly nocturnal or crepuscular
; come to lights
have narrow antennae with tapered ends, bigger heads and jaws
have serrate (with sawlike teeth) or pectinate (feathery) antennae
have very long antennae and large bulging eyes