Insect Diagnostic Laboratory

Cornell University, Dept. of Entomology
2144 Comstock Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853-2601

Link to Cornell’s  Dept. of Entomology

QUICK IDL PAGE LINKS:        Factsheets      Directions for sample IDs

Do you have an insect problem — or an insect you’re interested in — and want to know what it is, or more about it?

At Cornell’s Department of Entomology the Insect Diagnostic Lab can help identify insects and related arthropods, and provide management suggestions if needed. There is a $25 fee, for samples or photos submitted to the lab for an ID; these funds allow the Lab to remain open.
Click here for directions on how to send in samples or photos for identification.

PLEASE NOTE: the lab will be closed starting December 14, 2017 for Winter Break and will reopen January 2, 2018. In addition, Cornell University is closed December 23 to January 1, with no mail or deliveries at all during that period. Samples for ID will be handled once they’re received at the lab in January. Have a Happy New Year!

IDL FACTSHEETS

Do you already know what you have, or want more information?  We have a number of factsheets available.  Please feel free to take a look for descriptions and control recommendations.
Click on this link:
 Insect Diagnostic Lab Factsheets List

This time of year in the Northeast, several kinds of outdoor insects are attracted to houses and building walls, searching for sheltered places to overwinter.  If there are gaps around screens or doors, unscreened vents, or other openings, they can end up inside.  They can also get under siding and into attics, and during the winter on warm days may find their way indoors, where they wander but do not eat anything, and end up at windows trying to get outside again.  See our alphabetical Factsheets List for information on these:

Multicolored Asian lady beetles

Boxelder bug

Brown marmorated stink bug

Western conifer seed bug


OTHER TOPICS:

Spotted Wing Drosophila (SWD), a new invasive fly species originally from Asia, has been causing widespread injury to some fruit crops in New York State. Raspberries, blackberries, late-maturing blueberries, day-neutral strawberries, elderberries, cherries, and peaches are among the vulnerable crops. A factsheet on the Spotted Wing Drosophila is available from Cornell Cooperative Extension at: http://www.fruit.cornell.edu/spottedwing/pdfs/SWDgarden.pdf Because this species resembles other fruit flies, we recommend that you make sure the ID is verified before doing any major control measures.  For the latest information from NYS Integrated Pest Management on SWD, go to: http://blogs.cornell.edu/SWD1/


Have you ever wondered how insects are identified, and how it has changed over time?  In this 30 minute webinar http://vimeo.com/54970615 our diagnostician Jason Dombroskie discusses Trends in Insect Diagnostics.


Are you curious about what kinds of things are commonly sent in for identification?  Follow this link for the IDL top species each year which includes the most frequently-submitted kinds of samples from indoors, and on the second page, a list of the types of garden, yard, and house plants people have sent samples from, for pest identification.  In 2016 the most common indoor categories were No pest in sample, Carpet beetles, and Booklice. Most of the samples people were concerned might be bed bugs, turned out to be something else, including booklice, carpet beetles, or bat bugs (another biting pest species).


Other Contacts:

For questions about West Nile virus or Lyme disease, contact the local office of your state health department.

For questions about insects and related pests in and around the home, or in the garden, you can contact your local Cooperative Extension office. In New York State, see: Local Cooperative Extension Offices

For problems with a plant caused by disease, see Cornell’s Plant Disease Diagnostic Clinic at http://plantclinic.cornell.edu/


Photos in the IDL banner are © 2012 by Jason J. Dombroskie, Ph.D. (IDL Coordinator & Diagnostician).

From left to right: Alder flea beetle – adults (Chrysomelidae: Altica ambiens); Larder beetle – larva (Dermestidae: Dermestes lardarius); Spotted tussock moth – caterpillar (Erebidae, or Arctiidae: Lophocampa maculata); Indian meal moth – adult (Pyralidae: Plodia interpunctella); Cornfield ant (Formicidae: Lasius sp.) with Scale insects (Coccidae: Coccus sp.); European sowbug, or Common woodlouse – an Isopod, not an insect (Oniscidae: Oniscus asellus); Multicolored Asian lady beetle – adults (Coccinellidae: Harmonia axyridis); The Herald (moth) – caterpillar (Erebidae, or Noctuidae: Scoliopteryx libatrix).

Print Friendly