What is a Native Species?

A Native Species is found in an area, has developed in that area, and is usually kept in control by other native species of the area. Native species can be harmless, beneficial or a plant/animal/insect pest, in their area of origin.

This website provides several ways to contact a state agency to identify your specimen. Look for the downloadable app to report suspect insects; an electronic form to fill out and send; a Hotline number (1-800-491-1899) to call; or a link to each county’s agricultural commissioner or extension offices.


Snakefly (Agulla sp.)

Snakeflies are common to the West, but are seldom seen. Both adults and larvae are predaceous on soft bodied insects. (California native)

California Sister (Adelpha californica)

This butterfly was considered a subspecies of Adelpha bredowi, but is now recognised as a separate species of the Family Nymphalidae, or Brush footed butterfly. It is found throughout California, especially in oak woodlands. (California native)

Spittlebug [Family: Aphrophoridae (Cercopidae)]

Spittlebugs are "True bugs". Adults look a little like leafhoppers, but are usually not associated with foamy masses, hiding the nymphal stages, on their plants. (California native)

Brown Lacewing

The Brown Lacewing is a member of the Neuroptera Order. Adults and larvae feed on small, soft bodied adult, larvae/nymph and eggs of other insects. Both life stages feed on some mite species, too. Adults are usually seen at night, near a light source. (California native)

Harlequin bug (Murgantia histrionica)

Harlequin Bugs are a True Bug (Order: Hemiptera). Adults, nymphs and eggs are found on plants in the mustard family. This bug is usually found in the lower elevations throughout California. (California native)

Cicada (Platypedia minor)

You will hear this cicada long before you see it! It is an annual cicada usually found in the California foothills and mountains. (California native)

Green Lacewing

Some adults of this large family are predaceous, others feed on nectar, honeydew or pollen. The green lacewing insects are noticable for their erratic flight and more importantly, their foul odor if they are disturbed. (California native)

Jerusalem Cricket

Common throughout the Southwest US, this cricket member is nocturnal and usually found in moist, sandy soils. They are large (and fleshy looking), ground crawlers that generally do no harm to humans or their animals; HOWEVER, they will bite if provoked. (California native)

Flame Skimmer

Flame Skimmer (Libellula saturata), is common throughout California. This is a male skimmer; females are less flamboyant. Adults (found near a water source) and larval stages (found in aquatic habitats) of dragonflies and damselflies are voracious hunters of other insects. (California native)

California Mantid

This lovely lady can be found in shades of green, tan, and brown. It is found in the arid parts of Southern California and up into the Central Valley. (California native)

Petroleum Fly

A small, non-descript fly that hangs around petroleum seepage areas. The larvae live in the oil pools and feed on insects that have fallen into the oil. (California native)

Timema

Timema are an ancient lineage of unusually stout stick insects. This Timema was photographed on a Toyon bush in the coast range of northern California. (California native)

(Photo by AlexanderWild.com, used with permission.)

Banded Alder Borer

Located along western North America, Alaska through California, and in New Mexico, the banded alder borer may be found in the spring and summer on the bark of alder trees. BAB adults are frequently mistaken for the Asian longhorned beetle.