28 April 2009

Earth Day at UL, 2009

Steven and I were asked to exhibit some "critters" for UL's Earth Day (23 Apr) by Colette Anzalone, the Education Outreach Coordinator for the university's Department of Renewable Resources. We were glad to be part of such an event. It was a great success, and we got to catch up with some old friends; Will Bernard (UL - Cade Experimental Farm, crawfish complex), Jim Foret (UL Experimental Farm Administration), Dr. Wylie Barrow (USGS National Wetlands Research Center), Dr. Thomas Michot (USGS NWRC), Heather Baldwin (USGS NWRC) & Tyson Hatch (USGS NWRC).

Species exhibited were; six-spotted tiger beetle, Cicindella sexguttata, ox beetle, Strategus aloeus larvae & pupae, dung beetles, Phaneus sp. & Dichotomius sp. adults & pupae, spittle bugs - the larval stage of two-lined leafhopper (or spittlebug...), Prosapia bicincta, forest tent caterpillars, Malacosoma disstria, two types of tiger moth caterpillars (Family Arctiidae), Texas brown tarantula, Aphonopelma hentzi, Southern widow, Latrodectus mactans & brown widow, L. geometricus.

05 April 2009

Washington Brief 4 April 09

Ellen & I met the Barneys & Travis out at the Farm yesterday afternoon for a bit of trail work, and to hang out. We didn't spend an excessive amount of time looking around, but turned out a few things. Of most interest in terms of bugs (for me, at least), were the few beetles that were active. The day-flying Cicindella sexguttata, (six-spotted tiger beetle) proved (as usual...) to be a most challenging photo-adversary. A hind-shot is pretty much all I could muster........this time!

A mating pair of net-winged beetles, genus Calopteron, made a nice exiting surprise......

Along the pond, there were also pairs of long-jawed orb-weavers, genus Tetragnatha, breeding.........

Perhaps the most unusual find of the day however, was not of the six or eight-legged variety.....but a five-leaved clover found by Ellen in one of the Trifolium rapens patches in the field behind the pond! She has always had an uncanny ability for finding four-leaved clovers (~10-12 yesterday alone......), but this was definitely a first!

[below] (L) forest tent caterpillars, Malacosoma disstria and (R) white-marked tussock moth caterpillar, Orgyia leucostigma