21 June 2009

Alexandria & LeCompte 20/21 June 2009

Well.......Steve, Travis & I made a nocturnal run up to Alexandria to set up lights at my friend Roger Breedlove's house. We set up the rigs, and figured on driving around, checking out the local gas stations (more specifically their lights...). We found a moderate number of ox beetles, Strategus aloeus, mostly minor males & females, but a few major males tossed in for fun.

We also had at least one grapevine beetle, Pelidnota punctatus

There were a few Calosoma sayi specimens crawling around......

It was an overall dry run....in more than one way......it hadn't rained in a while....and unless Strategus is your only bounty........dry run fits there as well. Oh well.......next time!

10 June 2009

Mini-explosions from the Asilid World!!!

Man......if it gets better than this.......I don't know if I can maintain further composure!!!!

While watching the sun set the other afternoon, Ellen pointed out a remarkably beautiful, albeit miniscule dipterid just inches away from where we were sitting. I squeezed off a couple of pictures, and soon forgot about it......I dunno, I was chasing a wasp or something.........

So when it came time to upload the photos from my camera to our PC, there was something amiss. I initially passed this fly of as a Syrphyid fly of some sorts...........stupid ME.

Ellen insisted that it was a robber fly, so I sent the photos to Zack, who was so bold as to "bet money" on Asilidae. Now I was really intrigued........and super excited that my baby had potentially keyed out something pretty cool. The text below is from Gayle & Jeanelle Strickland:

"Congratulations to Ellen!! Not only is it an Asilid, but an excellent record. We think it is Atomosia sayii. Images of the genus Atomosia may be seen on Herschel Raney's website.
Click on the following link and scroll down to the last two photos which are A. sayii.
A similiar species, Atomosia rufipes has a bit of black on the legs. To see a photo of A. rufipes, click on the following BugGuide link.
Note that it is an excellent match for yours except for the touch of black on the legs. There are no images of A. sayii on BugGuide. I suggest that you tightly crop the images and submit both of them to BugGuide. The photo of A. rufipes is a good example of desired cropping.

So below are two images of the Atomosia sayii, followed by a couple of A. puella I found around the yard today............ -j

03 June 2009


Man......I almost didn't run my mercury vapor light this night.....but something told me.........

So I have had only 1 (one) single owlfly, Ululodes sp. come to my lights here in Broussard since I've been actively documenting. They're not rare or especially quirky......but I find them to be some of the most intriguing examples of the insect world.....

My very first experience with this Order was in Costa Rica, 2001. I was immediately drawn.......anyway, I still don't know much about them, but I love to photograph them......I really need to immerse myself in the ecology of this extraordinary insect!!! All photos were from 1 June 2009.