Monday, November 14, 2011

Scarites subterraneus

The very unique defensive posture of Scarites subterraneus Photo from Bugguide.

This took a bloody century to positively ID based on sheer photographic memory. Mind you I had never seen anything like this before that I can remember. It's very distinctive indeed. I had gone back and forth between several genera of ground beetles (Scarites ironically being the first choice but the angle of the photo had given me doubts and led me to search elsewhere) i.e Pasimachus.

Must've searched pretty much all my books on North American Insects until I wanted to pull my hair out. XD But then looking at another photo of Scarites subterraneus in another one of my books I properly decided to search (more like violate) the internet and found more photos thus "securing" my ID on the little bugger...........

.........that is until Bugguide had so kindly came up with yet another species (Scarites quadriceps) that's insanely similar to S. subterraneus that the only way to tell them apart other then by size is to look at the antennomeres for the difference between the 2.......

Are. you. freaking. kidding. me.?

Oohhh hooo it gets better. Just now after a brief perusal of Bugguide's Scarites guide page in general has led me......more like force me to consider it being one of 2 other species: S. quadriceps or S. vicinus because as stated above you can't ID these beetles with the "naked eye" so to speak.

Someone shoot me. However for now I'm sticking with Scarites subterraneus because the other have no info on them at all whatsoever. And I need info to narrow it down. At least I know definitely that S. subterraneus occurs in NY........I live in NY. *^^*

One question though that might help with narrowing down ID. Bugguide seems to be unsure of the season that S. subterraneus occurs in and lists "Summer?" underneath the season they're supposedly seen in.......

I found mine (assuming it's most definitely S. subterraneus) in November on a beautiful fall day that felt like Spring/Summer.

What's going on? Also mine had adopted said defensive posture when I picked it up....I had thought it was dead at first but then regained my common sense back ^^;;;; It was found under a rock surround by tons of leaf litter.

What's going on here? @_@

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Sesiidae Sessiions--Using Pheromones to attract Clearwings

Yellow-legged Clearwing (Synanthedon vespiformis)

Came across this today. I'm amazed right now. I had no idea you could do this. I wonder if this is doable with other moth species. While I'm not entirely sure that we have any species of Sesiidae over here (Central Park most definitely) I have seen 2 Hemaris thysbe (Sphingidae) this year which shocked me.

I wonder, should they return in larger numbers this coming year (please do so! I ♥ U *^^*) I want to experiment with this. I'm also wondering could I get pheromones of other species? Being that I have no clue what moth species reside in my beloved park I have to really do some thinking here.

Any ideas? All of this Sesiidae research has led to more epic books. See here!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Pieridae Wonders: Blue Albatross (Appias celestina)

Blue Albatross (Appias celestina) Previously Pieris celestina Boisduval 1832 *Is wondering about the 'Catophaga' in parentheses* Perhaps another taxonomic change had taken place somewhere?

These are delightful! Can't seem to find any live photos. From the few that showed up from preserved specimens I want a live photo. I mean how many blue members of Pieridae do you hear about everyday (yes there are others)?

Exactly none. It's "unheard" of. But you see I should've at least expected it being that I know of the Jezebels and their insane hindwing patterns and the other insanely colored Pieridae (will get into just how insane another time......soon). I should've expected to come across blue least in part.

But nope. *^^* Love it when that happens. This is from my research. And there's also this. Again I want a freaking LIVE photo of one. I want to see them in their prime.

Aaaah someday hopefully someone will capture one.

Friday, November 11, 2011

♥More Butterflies♥

Various Morphos. I wonder if Morpho polyphemus luna is in here? I'll get a good look when I go back. *^^*

I'm forever grateful for this place. As you might've noticed I've been on a Lepidopteran Junkie High. It started when I first walked in on opening day (the 8th of October) and has been continuous on and off ever since.

Throughout all of this. I've fallen in love with lepidoptera "again". I've always loved them but this year.......they've been there for me in various ways when I needed them the most. They have been epic this year and I thank The Creator for them immensely.

God bless you Lepidoptera.......♥ I hope that next year will be filled, invaded, "contaminated", infested, and taken over by your breathtaking presence. It's already proving it's potential with National Moth Week and the knowledge of "Secret" Butterfly Gardens in Central Park.

Good Lord I can't wait! You shall hear even more from me as I'm researching and learning more and I still have more photos to show you. 0_0 Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Mystery Butterfly #1


This is all I can guess. I have no idea what this is. This was one of the newly released ones.


Simply gorgeous.


Little fuzzy. *^^* If anyone knows what this is let me know. Taken at the NHM Butterfly Exhibit 11-05-2011.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

NHM Butterflies: The Great Mormon (Papilio memnon)

Male Great Mormon (Papilio memnon) along with a mystery butterfly that I had not noticed until after I uploaded the photo. ^^;; Can you see it?

Yet another insanely sexually dimorphic Swallowtail. Smh......The females have numerous forms, with and without tails and mimic other poisonous Swallowtails. Someone needs to write a book on these too. All of them. Thing is there are books on Swallowtails and I'll be buying them ASAP after I get some other books out of the way......but there needs to be one solely on the sexually dimorphic Papilionidae.

They need to have like an identification guide or something for all the different forms the females of various species take, what they mimic, and how to tell the difference.

Is there anything like this already out there? Names and Authors please if so.

Now on to business!


Idk why this came out so dark.....>_< Male

Great Mormon (Papilio memnon):


TONS of males flying and perching around this one plant (see first photo) looking stunning. I now wonder why this was so? Was this just something that happened because of being "enclosed" (it's a big place so excuse my lack of proper words) in an area or is this a natural male behavior of some sort like puddling?

The last one I remember seeing & photographing is the one that was perched on one of the feeders looking absolutely stunning. Again photos DO NOT do any of these justice as they're details that cameras sometimes don't capture unfortunately.

One day I'll look into micro cameras should I ever get the money to do so. Lottery tickets perhaps? >:)

For this there will be a part 2 since I've made some very interesting discoveries!

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Out With a Bang + Crittercams!

Since today was absolutely gorgeous out I went to my beloved park and was greatly rewarded with an epic bughunt. I saw sooo many of my little friends it was shocking.

I simply am in awe. I got what I'm calling crittercams. Lookie:

Dronefly (Eristalis tenax) A new one to add to the ever growing list (expect a part 2 on that) of buggaboos in that epic park of mine. =)

Along with that gorgeous fly I saw these:

1 Cabbage White (Pieris rapae) Oh. My. God. *Speechless*
Honeybees, More Droneflies, a mix?
1 Mystery green "worm" RESEARCH!
Aphids (1 black aphid) in their maiden flights
1 slug
1 queen red ant *Held it and attempted to get a video but it was waayy to blurry
1 millipede
1 Scarites subterraneus * Took a bloody century to nail an ID on this one. More later
1 Springtail *first thought it was a proturan or a dipluran but I'm pretty sure now it's a Springtail of some sort
Woodlice! (Porcellio spinicornus)

Woodlice (Porcellio spinicornus) There were tons of these. When I lifted the rock they had all more or less scattered like roaches. Hilarious. ^^

Today was a masterpiece. It felt like spring......♥ It was like they were all saying bye for the year or something. So sweet. They were out much later this year. You have no idea how grateful I am for that. Butterflies and other assorted creepy crawlies in November?!

Congratulations you've set a record. Let's see if you can top it next year!! I love you! ♥

Monday, November 07, 2011

NHM Butterflies: Banded Peacock (Anartia fatima)

Banded Peacock (Anartia fatima) Sorry for the fuzziness. *^^*

Such beauties. Remind me of the Admirals (Limenitis sp.). I know nothing on these so further research later will have to take place. But that's for later. ^^

These were identified as "Black Peacocks" I wonder where that name came from because Googling with that name came up with nothing. I had to use the scientific name. Smh.....


This was one of the newly released ones. He/She headed straight for my jacket more or less. How sweet! I guess it liked the color? I don't blame you it' s a nice shade of green indeed. *^^*

Banded Peacock (Anartia fatima):


The first one in the first photo was perched on some flowers and I managed to get 2 pictures and get an ID as I didn't know what it was at the time only that I've seen pictures before. *^^* The one on my jacket was one of many butterflies being released and there were several of them in the mix. One head straight for my jacket. =)

I managed to get videos of the butterflies (in general) being released now I just have to figure out how to post them since Youtube is not an option (site's not working for me Idk why).

I'll get back to you on that one. More entries to be worked on!!

Sunday, November 06, 2011

NHM Butterflies: Green Banded Swallowtail (Papilio phorcas)

Green Banded Swallowtail (Papilio phorcas) This was the only photo I could get. *^^* I wanted one with the wings open but it was being stubborn. XD

Gorgeous gorgeous species. While I was doing my research on these I've "learned" that this may or may not be another sexually dimorphic species (one site say "yes" and has pictures of the supposed female and the other says "no") and that it's related to Papilio dardanus (Wikipedia).

There are also numerous subspecies too. They're gorgeous swallowtails.


What the upperside looks like. Photo obtained while Googling. Supposedly this is the male. I still have to figure this out. But in the mean time....


Mine was over by some of the feeders flying around and looking stunning. It was also over flying under the heater lights (*Note this is not the only butterfly to do this either)! At this point it was acting more like a moth then a butterfly. I wanted to get a video but that was impossible. ^^;; too fast and it was everywhere. ^____^

It had landed on my hand for a few epic seconds as if to say "Hello to you too" and then proceeded to go only God knows where. Was mistaken for Papilio ulysses by the staff at first. ^^.. How cute! Nooo. P. ulysses is much larger. About the size of P. glaucus....but I think larger then that too as the one I observed was big.*^^*

Unfortunately the one I observed was no longer in the physical realm but it was beautiful nonetheless. I do hope to see one someday though. That's another story for another entry. *^^*

Upon my research of these butterflies I have found things about them and Papilionidae in general that's making me fall in love with them. ♥


Butterfly Corner *This is the one where it says there's no sexual differences between males and females
Nyungwe Lepidoptera Diversity Project
*Supposedly has a picture of a female. Looks nothing like the male

I'd like to know what the hell's going on here with this? The Wikipedia article used the same photo of the supposed female too but mentions nothing on them being sexually dimorphic. Only mentions range and subspecies.

I'd like to know where the first site got the info that there aren't any sexual differences......

Will be asking around about this.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

NHM Butterfly Exhibit Expedition #2

Ohhhhh my God they had Graphium weiskei!! I was always under the impression that these were larger. Beautiful! © Brittanie McCormack 2011

As you can see I went again today. *^^* On BoA's birthday too of all days. ♥ Got tons of photos...around 30 something this time.

On top of that I have new butterflies to research and do entries on at some point (I'm still behind in filling in for October I've been "distracted" with all this research). Upon my second visit to the Gates of Heaven I've learned even more.

I cannot wait to visit again but I have bigger and badder things to save up for (Actias luna cocoons, books, nets, etc). I'll be going after I get my precious (A. luna) sorted out. I got about half done so far.

So happyyyyy


A Heliconius erato had landed on me twice.........the same one too within an hour(s) period I believe. I swear it's like they know....♥ I'll never get tired of saying this either. My face was "raped" by what I believe was a Charaxes solon. These are very bulky butterflies. It felt like I was holding a grasshopper!

The only thing I could think of besides it just being a very heavy butterfly was that the one I observed was gravid.......but it didn't look it at all. Hmmmmm.......No Saturniids this time but I did find out that the best time to see them there is in March towards Spring. ♥

I already have planned dates:

March 1st (My B-day I'll be 20....Holy shit!)
March 20th (First day of Spring)

And anything in between that. *^^*

New Additions:

1. Green Banded Swallowtail (Papilio phorcas) *Landed on me for a brief minute fluttering like mad as if to say "Hello" *^^*
2. Banded Peacock (Anartia fatima) *Was identified as a "Black Peacock" saw several of these held a newly released one.
3. Great Mormon (Papilio memnon) *Several males flitting around the same plant
4. Common Mormon (Papilio polytes)
5. Red/Malay Lacewing (Cethosia biblis) *Female being released
6. Great Southern White (Ascia monuste)
7. Charaxes solon? *Or something similar
8. Cracker (Hamadryas sp.)

Let the research/blogging begin!