Monthly Archives: June 2011

Thoughts on Butterfly Conservation

Last week I attended an environmental conference in Charleston, South Carolina.  Charlestown is a wonderful town with lots of charm, friendly people, and good food.  However, I found myself contemplating negative issues regarding the habitats found in cities. One of the local speakers mentioned that fireflies … Continue reading

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A Black Swallowtail

I wandered through our field the other day, taking a butterfly survey.  One thing I noticed was that there were areas with lots of butterflies and areas with few.  Water in the environment seemed to make a pretty big difference–where … Continue reading

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A Robber Fly

Robber flies are generally large, showy insects.  They can be quite charismatic, in fact.  One of my favorite web sites that discusses robber flies can be found on the Wisconsin Butterflies site.  Cerotainia albipilosa is quite small and perhaps not so … Continue reading

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Hackberry Emperor

Butterflies are not known for making noise, although there are a few species of adults and larva that do.  If they fly close enough you can hear their wing beats, however. This hackberry emperor, Asterocampa celtis, buzzed by my ear yesterday, and flew … Continue reading

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I found these two harvestmen (order Opiliones) under a piece of bark in my yard.  They were hanging upside-down on the underside of the bark, but turning them over for the photo did not seem to bother them much.

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Milkweeds and Insects

Milkweeds are very attractive flowers for insects.  This margined leatherwing, Chauliognathus marginatus was one of many on a common milkweed flower I checked out yesterday.  Margined leatherwings are a type of soldier beetle and are related to fireflies. The little yellow … Continue reading

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Great Spangled Fritillary

This is the upper side of a great spangled fritillary.  It seems a little more red in the photo than I remembered it as I photographed it. Great spangled fritillaries are large butterflies with relatively long life spans.  They live … Continue reading

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Bee Mimic Flies

I recently photographed two flies that are obviously bee mimics.  They both look like bees–one a honeybee and the other a bumblebee.  Both sort of pump their abdomens–sending a not so subtle message that they have a stinger and are … Continue reading

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Butterflies Drinking Sap

I saw these butterflies the other day, drinking sap from a wounded tree.   This is a question mark butterfly, Polygonia interrogationis. The photo below is a northern pearlyeye, Enodia anthedon. Butterflies will often take food other than nectar.  They will … Continue reading

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The Ebony Jewelwing

There is a beautiful damselfly that is often seen around running water–small creeks and streams.  This charming insects changes color with a change in the direction of light.  The ebony jewelwing is known as Calopteryx maculata.

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