Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Familiarity Shouldn't Breed Contempt

I admit I'm guilty of always taking out the camera in the hope of something new and exotic. And lets face it there is a long long list of bugs out there that I've not seen yet and many of them, especially over here, are decidedly exotic.

But that shouldn't mean I overlook the things I see pretty much every day in the yard. A few examples here from the past couple of days. Beginning with the proverbially familiar damselfly, the Familiar Bluet (Enallagma civile). I'm saying its that one but these are notoriously difficult to ID. But of all the half dozen or so almost identical, mid sized, local, blue and black pond Damsels its by far the most common and so most likely.

Among all those large and flashy Monarchs and Swallowtails its easy to overlook the Buckeye (Junonia coenia) until it turns up in such numbers that it can't be ignored anymore. And take the time to look and its a very attractive little butterfly with those orange forewing epaulettes and the subtly shaded hindwing eye spots (which remind me of the Peacock back in Europe).

As ever there are hordes of Skippers on the Lantana. This weeks commonest being the Fiery Skipper (Hylephila phyleus) identifiable by the bright orange underwing with the multiple black spots.

Also familiar around the yard is the Carolina Wren. While Wrens here are a lot less secretive than the European version they do still like to nest securely. This one is nesting in Mrs. B's hanging basket Dahlia and has hatched 4 eggs in the past weekend. It took a while to realize she was even there as she burrowed under the potting soil and built a chamber among the roots lined and concealed with moss. We only really noticed when she flew out 3 night running when we watered the pot.

Awaiting positive ID though is this long horned katydid (?) in the Mallow on the opposite side of the front door from the wren.

Make that  insanely Long Horned !

1 comment:

  1. I thought the damselfly was a dragonfly, which is doubly stupid becuase I learned that the damselfly was a damselfly back in June of 1993. I remember the year becuase I was 9 months pregnant with my daughter and mucking about in Sinking Creek in Newport, VA for one of my grad classes when I learned it. At least I still remember that my daughter was born in June of 1993.

    I saw an amazing number of butterflies today (for me, that is.) I counted 5: (1) swallowtail, (2) monarch, (3) mostly black with yellow spots, (4) small monarch type, (5) white one. And a few honey bees and lots of some sort of small bumblebee. And one bug with long triangular wings. Just that one bug though, no others.

    I heard a cricket singing.

    I also saw frogs and one tiny winy itty bitty toad.

    And a gold finch.

    It was a good day.