Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Back to the usual suspects

A little porch moth, anyone?

A small, interesting spider, with all her worldly possessions arranged on either side of her.

This guy was at the edge of her web. Not sure if it's her hubby or just some interloper.

I'm almost certain that this late instar mantid nymph is the same one from this post.

He's just inches from the spot where I took his picture in spring. One more shed,though, and he'll be flying off to find a mate.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

My Utah trip on Flickr

OK. I think I have most of my stuff uploaded. There's other things besides bugs in this set, like scenery! I started labeling and describing them all, but I ran out of patience. I'll get to it eventually (hopefully).

My Utah trip on Flickr

Lep-stuff from Utah

These are not in any kind of order.

I found this wooly bear type caterpillar partially embedded in the dust of a trail. I think somebody might have stepped on him, but the deep, fine sand had saved him from being squished. When I came upon him, I thought his curled up body was some kind of pine cone or something.

I carried him in my hand until I found a safe place to release him.

Clio Tiger Moth by the side of the road

Hairstreak butterfly.

Weeping walls, hanging gardens

The vertical canyon walls of Zion Canyon are wet with water that constantly drips down from little streams at the top of the mountains. This moist, slimy environment supports hanging gardens of ferns and other delicate plants.

The wet walls are also the home of the tiny Zion Snail, which when I learned of its existence, I made a special effort to find. Unfortunately, none of my pictures of it came out very well. This was the best one.

This little leafhopper was just getting his feet wet.

In the water: above and below

This was at Emerald Pool #3 at Zion.

A spider, suspended in its web over the water, with its reflection below.

Water Strider

Damselfly nymph, I think.

There were lots of damselflies, of different colors. Of course I liked this bright blue one the best.

More from Utah...in the water

This is Emerald Pool #2 in Zion Park. One of the 3 Emerald Pools you can hike to. Very popular, as with most of the places we visited, we had plenty of company on the trail. But when you look out at the nature before you (located just beyond a chain-barrier for your safety as well as that of the delicate biome) you can forget for a moment that you are part of a crowd of international travellers.

There were big, plump tadpoles here! And nobody seemed to notice them but me! But when I exclaimed, "Ooh- tadpoles!" while leaning over the chain barrier to get as close to them as possible, people noticed. And Jerry tried to pretend he didn't know me.

It's hard to tell in this picture, but this guy has all 4 legs. I also saw another tadpole>froglet on the far side of the little pond (which was scarcely as big as a swimming pool) who had chosen just that moment to venture out on land with still half of his tail. Unfortunately, he was too far away and too tiny for me to take a picture of him.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Honeybee Awareness Day

I'm interrupting my Utah bug posting for this announcement:

August 22, (this Saturday) is the first annual National Honeybee Awareness Day.

Here in California, our own Fullerton Arboretum will be hosting a presentation by the Beekeepers Association of Orange County. Click on the photo above to find out where you can attend festivities in your area.

Utah beetles

Zion mystery pupae

Many structures around the Zion visitor center had these mystery pupae on them.

I don't know what they are.

Whatever was inside has already emerged. I asked a ranger if he knew what they were, and he didn't know either. In my experience with bug ID questions in national parks, the rangers usually know less than I do. They know about the park's history, geology, the plants and the bigger animals, and that's a lot to cover already, but I haven't met an entomologist-ranger yet.

Utah grasshopper diversity

There were lots of grasshoppers just about everywhere we went. I think this one was by the side of the road on the way to the northern part of Zion.

In Bryce Canyon, this brown fellow made a lot of noise as he was flying. I followed the sound and saw what appeared to be a large grasshopper with yellow wings. Once he landed and I was able to sneak up on him, he really wasn't very big. He was very well camoflauged, and his yellow inner wings were all folded up, so I couldn't see them.

Another little grasshopper with red legs.

There were lots of these pretty green ones.

These green ones were all (as far as I could tell) females, and they had short wings, so they probably couldn't fly.

A lot of them had "dates". The boys were all brownish.

These lovers were yet another species.

We saw a rather large grasshopper shed skin on a trail. It looked like a gray bird, but I didn't see any of the actual grasshoppers....

...but I did see a bunch of these beauties. Green Bird grasshoppers! These were a first for me. They were at the Zion Visitor Center.

A dorsal view.

A little desert grasshopper in Amboy, in the California desert along Route 66, on our way home.

Now you see him...

Now you don't! Well, maybe you still do!

Smaller spiders

A tiny yellow crab spider

Not sure what kind this was, but she was pretty.
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