Insects

the lunas

August 27, 2009

in Insects,Natural history

We left off with dozens of silkmoth caterpillars snug in their cocoons. For the most part, I expected these to overwinter. I’m at 42 degrees N latitude, and, for instance, the Luna eggs were laid on on 30 May, the…

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A couple years ago I lamented that I didn’t see sillkmoths much anymore.That was the year our friend Dr. Steve gave us a couple of Polyphemus (Anthera polyphemus) cocoons, so we got to see (and release) the adults that emerged….

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I haven’t spent much time in the field this summer. The last 6 or 7 years, I’ve had summer field work tied to grants; this year, my grants involve sitting in front of the computer. But over the holiday weekend…

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June 22-28 is the 2nd Annual National Pollinator Week, an event sponsored by the Pollinator Partnership. The fact that so many of the world’s pollinators are in deep trouble is finally starting to make the news. There are, of course,…

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In August, I described my summer “project,” to learn more about the flies, bees, and wasps in my yard. I posted a series of some of the photos I took of the cool Diptera (flies) I was able to identify….

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I’ve been sort of lazy about posting lately. For the last week, I’ve been on semi-”vacation” which means catching up on writing projects and things around the house between wrapping up my summer field work and preparing to begin fall…

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Eastern cicada killers (Sphecius speciosus) are big wasps. The “dainty” males are about 3 cm long, and the females up to 4 cm. Adding to the intimidation factor is the behavior of the males, which gather in “leks” of up…

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There are pros and cons to being the coordinator for a big field project. The upside is that I get to spend a lot of time in the field myself. The downside is that it is often in places that…

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This week I’ve been trying to finish up some especially obnoxious paperwork on a project before my field season begins in earnest. Since I’m annoyed, I thought I’d take a little break and write about an annoying creature: the earwig….

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Large aggregations of insects — a crop of periodical cicadas, overwhelming hatches of mayflies, or the sudden synchronous appearance of many colonies of winged ants — are most often a summertime phenomena. But fall can be an excellent time to…

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