Archive for the ‘Insects’ Category

Fall Flutterers

Monarch butterflies haven’t been as numerous as they have in previous years.

Silver-spotted skippers have a white spot on the underside of their hindwings, and American painted ladies have four smaller spots on underside of their hindwings.

A Sachem skipper is in the right side of the picture, and two painted lady butterflies on the left.

This picture was taken closer to the butterfly and shows the intricate design of the painted lady.

The red circle easily identifies the red admiral butterfly.And last, but not least, is the common Monarch butterfly.

 

 

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Predator – Butterfly

Several pearl crescent butterflies visit the sedum plants in the moon garden.

They concentrate more on eating than watching out for predators.

It’s hard to see from the angle of the camera that there’s a predator behind the wings on the right. This time it’s an ambush bug.

  The ambush bugs are only up to 1/2 inch long, and can change color to match the color of the flower they’re on.

Blue Dasher

The numbers of butterflies and dragonflies were extremely low in southern Illinois last summer.

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I think this dragonfly was a male blue dasher.

I don’t need a name to enjoy things I find. Just the discovery and observations are enough … plus taking pictures if it cooperates.

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This widow skimmer landed right in front of me. I took this to mean it wanted in the blog too.

What a Surprise Part 2

I went out in the yard the next evening, and there lay a luna moth on the ground. I didn’t see any movement.

Another one lay close by. It didn’t move any either.

None of the ones I saw moved. I walked to the backyard after taking all the pictures I needed.

Then … another surprise … I walked on down in the backyard, and there were the wings of another luna moth.

None of the wings were attached.

There was no body either.

It looked like the wings fell off.

These were all that was left of the moth. It must have burrowed in the ground to complete its transformation.

What a Surprise! Part 1

I went out after supper last night, and there on the side of the sweetgum tree was a luna moth.

 I haven’t seen one of these for years! It tolerated my presence while I took pictures … and more pictures.

The evening light slightly changed the color of the moth.

Moths have feathery antennae. Butterflies don’t.

This spot looks like an eye and would keep predators away.

A luna moth’s wingspan measures between 3.0 -4.25 inches wide.

I didn’t realize they had such a large body.

Wonders Never Cease

 Common Milkweed

Four common milkweed plants grow beside the back garage (which will be torn down this summer).

A few insects visit the flowers,

and a white crab spider hides on the underneath side of one of the leaves. The spider can change colors to match the color of the flower it’s on.

Monarch Chrysalis

On one of my walks around the backyard looking for spiders, I found a monarch butterfly chrysalis in an old garage that will be torn down soon.

I watched the chrysalis— daily, waiting for the butterfly to emerge.

Then the chrysalis turned slightly darker.  I expected the butterfly to emerge soon … It did, but I wasn’t there to watch it.