Oval yellow cluster of about 50 of these found in soil

Asked March 27, 2017, 5:10 PM EDT

Hello, can you help me identify these pupa type things in the photo? They were found in the soil in my raised garden bed. I squished a few and they popped, but then stopped thinking they might be ladybugs??? Thanks for considering. Btw, in Washington County the drop down would not let me select other option.

Multnomah County Oregon

3 Responses

Dear Client,

I am quite sure that these pupae are not any species of beetle, let alone lady beetle pupae. Lady beetle larvae pupate above ground, generally near the plant where their prey, aphids, are found. FMI, see http://oregonstate.edu/dept/nurspest/Lady_beetles.html

Fly larvae (maggots) tend to pupate inside their last larval skin and several families of larvae pupate in the soil. Typically, the larvae leave the plant material or corpse on which they feed, and find a suitable area in the soil to pupate not far from the source. As most pupae age, they turn from the pearly white color to a reddish brown to black color. I cannot tell what family of Diptera, or fly, these pupae are, but suggest that they originated from some decaying plant or animal material not far from where you found them. As an example of a fly pupae that could be encountered in a home garden, see: http://horticulture.oregonstate.edu/content/cabbage-maggot

Of course, there are many other possible sources of these larvae/pupae especially if they are not too far from a garbage dumpster or can.

Hope this helps!

Thank you for your reply. I placed the eggs in a sealed container and today found grasshoppers are hatching.

Dear Client,

Thanks for your persistence in finding the answer to your question. I was completely wrong in my diagnosis. And who says the size of the organism does not matter?

And who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks? Thank you!