Return to Campus

Visit our FAQ website for the latest information about health and safety.

Back to Top

Lovebugs

Delta Journal
by Bob Thomas

Late spring ‘tis the time of year when those mysterious lovebugs are everywhere, especially spattered on the front of your car where they may clog the radiator, obscure vision or, if left too long, damage the paint with their acidic juices. Not only do they appear in great numbers in May, but lovebugs usually pop up again around September.

Leaf Miners

Nature Profile
by Bob Thomas

“Hey, look at this! It looks like a road map on a leaf!” This visitor to a typical Louisiana forest or field has just seen his first leaf miner, an insect larva which lives inside a leaf and feeds on the tissues between the upper and lower epidermis. As it moves about, a trail is produced that gives away its presence. Perfectly adapted for this lifestyle, the larvae are flattened and have reduced or no legs.

Lightning Bugs

Delta Journal
by Bob Thomas

Most of us cherish the memories of summer nights during our childhood when we played hide-n-seek and caught fireflies, or lightning bugs. The bugs (actually beetles) were a curiosity and just plain fun, but their story is fascinating indeed.

Fall Webworms

Delta Journal
by Bob Thomas

Fall webworms (Hyphantria cunea) are members of the tiger moth family. Webworm caterpillars are small and green with black spots and long white hairs along the sides, while the adult moths are whitish, often with dark spots, and measure less than two inches from open wing tip to wing tip.

Secretive Critters Under Rocks

Delta Journal
by Bob Thomas

My first herp (reptiles and amphibians) collecting consisted of walking about searching for animals on the move. I spent many wonderful hours stalking water snakes sunning on limbs extending over the water. How many times did I get soaked and come oh, so close! As I recall, the most difficult to catch on a sunny day was the Graham’s Crawfish Snake.

Chiggers

Delta Journal
by Bob Thomas

Chigger is a colloquial name for all mite species that afflict humans. Most mites are not chiggers, so they don’t cause the irritation described below. For those that do give us fits, it is the larval form – not the adult - that causes problems.

Barklice

Delta Journal
by Bob Thomas

"Oh, no! Something else is attacking our oak trees! What’s covering the limbs with a fine sheen of silk? Will they sting? Will they kill the tree?"

Due to our experience with stinging buck moth caterpillars, this is an understandable reaction to anything strange associated with New Orleans' beloved live oak trees.