Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Expert Profile

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I can answer most questions related to the identification of "mystery bugs" in NORTH AMERICA, including spiders. Attach images if possible. No "what bit me?", "what do I feed this bug in captivity?", or science fair project questions please. No technical questions about insect physiology.

Experience in the area

Principal author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Professional entomologist employed previously at University of Massachusetts, Chase Studio, Inc., and Cincinnati Zoo; contract work for West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Smithsonian Institution, and Portland (Oregon) State University.


Author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Missouri Conservationist magazine, Ranger Rick, Timeline (journal of the Ohio Historical Society). I have contributed to several books as well.


Oregon State University, undergraduate major in entomology, did not receive degree.

Awards and Honors

One of the top 50 experts in all categories for AllExperts.com, 2009.

Past/Present Clients

Principal author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Smithsonian Institution (contract), Cincinnati Zoo (employer), Portland State University (contract), Chase Studio, Inc (employer), Arkansas Museum of Discovery (guest speaker). Currently seeking speaking engagements, leadership roles at nature festivals, workshops, and ecotours.

What do you like about this subject?

Insects and related creatures are so diverse that it is impossible to become bored learning about them; and there is a great deal left to be discovered about them.

What do you still hope to achieve/learn in this field?

I am a writer/illustrator, and hope to publish more books and articles on natural history, especially insects and spiders.

Something interesting about this subject that others may not know:

You share over 20% of your DNA with common "fruit flies," genus Drosophila. You like bananas?:-)

Something controversial or provocative about this subject

Chemical insecticides do more harm than good in most cases. Returning agriculture to a smaller scale (largely doing away with agri-BUSINESS), would solve many pest problems without chemicals.

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    K = Knowledgeability    C = Clarity of Response    P = Politeness
Deborah04/22/14101010Speedy answer, concise, but with suggestions for .....
joyce04/21/14101010oh well. I was just curious. I .....
Erica04/12/14101010Thanks for the help it made me .....
Kayla04/06/14101010THANKS :D
sammy04/04/14101010Thank you for the prompt response and .....

Recent Answers from Eric R. Eaton

2014-04-22 Flying bug:

Jolena:    Thank you for including the image with your question.    The insect is a solitary wasp called a mason wasp, family Vespidae, subfamily Eumeninae, and probably Ancistrocerus for the genus

2014-04-21 House Centipede?:

Deborah:    Thanks for including the image with your question.    This is *not* a house centipede, but a "stone centipede."  Here's more:    http://bugguide.net/node/view/13169    They can sometimes blunder

2014-04-20 bug:

Joyce:    With all due respect, without an image, or at least a far more detailed description, I cannot identify the insect for you.  There are literally thousands of potential suspects.  Florida has many

2014-04-20 Can you help me identify this bug?:

Maya:    Thank you for including the images with your question.    The nearest thing I can think of is the larva of a "brown lacewing," such as the ones in these images:    http://bugguide.net/node/view/265426/bgimage

2014-04-15 Bugs in the kichen:

Andrius:    Thank you for including the images.  They are "booklice" in the order Psocodea.  Here's more about them and how best to control them (I'd advise against any kind of chemical treatments in any


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