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pauluspaolo

Bug Photos

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Here he is 2 days later, and doubled in size...look at his size in relation to the (similar) sized leaf, compared to the last set of pics.

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...and here, after another 2 days, he's ready to moult into a bigger skin.

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Here, he's spun a pad of silk to anchor the old skin to, in order that he can crawl out of it when it splits.

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...finally, he contracts his body (note how the head is protruding due to internal pressure) in order to split the skin, which will start at the head. By tomorrow, he should have completed this.

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Here he is 2 days later, and doubled in size...look at his size in relation to the (similar) sized leaf, compared to the last set of pics.

This is better than National Geographic...! :kewlpics:

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Sorry to interrupt Rogers great thread but I found this on the path outside our house this morning. It was very much alive & would have been trodden on I'm sure so I transferred him(?) to a nearby wall. Apparently it's an Elephant Hawk Moth - quite a common species though I've never seen one before & the colours (green & pink) were absolutely stunning - it's not the best photo but I was running a bit late so it was taken in haste.

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No photos unfortunately but I was down at the campus pond yesterday & there was a Broad Bodied Chaser dragonfly zooming about - again a beautiful colour (bluey violet) - I tried to take a photo but it wouldn't let me get anywhere near it :( It did a few flypasts though & it made a deep drone as it went by.

Why aren't all summers like this? :)

Edited by pauluspaolo

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Just to recap...last night before I left work, the Puss moth larva was preparing to shed its skin into its final instar before pupation. As mentioned before, the head is pushed forward by internal pressure, and will split to reveal the final stage.

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This morning, this had taken place, and the final stage revealed. Note how much bigger the head is now...it looks disproportionally large at then moment, but in a few days, the larva will have increased in size, and will look normal.

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Two more days on, and he's doubled in size again...

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I love the 'cartoon like' smiley face...though the eyespots are just markings, and the 'mouth' is actually the gland that squirts formic acid at predators.

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Edited by Roger the Dodger

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OK...so 12 days ago, this little chap looked like this...

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....now, he's as big as my little finger....

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I don't think it'll be long before pupation. Keep you posted.

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Yep...the male moths antennae are always more highly developed than the females...to detect the pheromones that the females release to attract a mate...here's a pair of Eyed Hawk moths that have just emerged from a couple of overwintered pupae that I kept...you can see the male (bottom right) and his feathered antennae. In this pic, the female has already laid a couple of eggs on the twigs provided for wing expansion.

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Edited by Roger the Dodger

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Some old pics,

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Whoa.....those are are some seriously nasty bugs...reminds me of the time I spent in Iraq.........some seriously nasty bugs there...Solifugids, or Sand spiders as they're known, are pretty savage....preferring to run their prey down...one similar to this (that I had captive in Iraq) completley shredded a mole cricket in about 30 seconds.

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Edited by Roger the Dodger

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Back to the Puss moth, and after the weekend, there're big changes. The colour has changed over the last two days, and he's now searching for a place to pupate. Normally, Puss moth larvae incorporate chewed bark from the food plant into the cocoon in order to camouflage it. Hopefully, this will be the next stage.

This was last Friday...

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The colour has changed dramatically, to a deep purple shade.

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...and the larva has contracted and become shorter and tighter...a sure sign that pupation is imminent.

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Edited by Roger the Dodger

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Hi

mine made this cocoon before pupating out of chewed bits of wood an silk. It was rock hard and very camouflaged.

Neil

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Edited by Snapper

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I know these aren't bugs...but they eat bugs and I can't be arsed to start a new topic!

We were wondering around Saddlescombe Farm yesterday which is only 2-3 miles from where we live and there were house martins flying in and out of an old barn. Only had my mobile phone but managed to take a photo of where all the noise was coming from :)

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Hi I would say that is a Swallows nest and it is typical Swalliw nesting area

Neil

My wife, who is a bit of a ornithologist, says the parents were definitely not swallows. I'm not about to disagree with her :no:

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Whilst digging the new border at work, I unearthed this Cockchafer larva...not a very pleasant looking beastie, but still worth a look, as they're not often seen.

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For more info and a look at the familiar adult Cockchafer (or Maybug) have a look here.

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While cutting the Box bushes to day, I came across several batches of common Garden Spider spiderlings which had just hatched out. These always facinate me as when you touch them, the spiderlings all run off in different directions, only to re-congregate a few minutes later....must be the old 'safety in numbers' trick.

Spiderlings all grouped together...

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...and when disturbed....'Quick! Run away!'

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Just back frrom a week in Menorca, and a couple of things I spotted. Firstly, a Rhinoceros beetle that was under a Fig tree..

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...and secondly, an Italian Wall lizard...very common on walls and rocks in Menorca. Sorry for the quality, these were taken at full 18x zoom, as these lizards won't let you get within about 10 feet (3m) of them.

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Wow, what a thread!

I do apologise for not getting quite the way through it all but I did my best. I do want to thank Roger the Dodger specially for not only providing masses of wonderful photographs but also for giving snippets of useful and fascinating information. How you do it Rog, with your busy job on the estate, I don't know :)

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A couple captured today in the hot sunshine....firstly the 'Comma' butterfly. Some time ago, I took this pic of a Comma on Buddleja.

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At the time, I wanted to show why this butterffly is named so. Today, I got the chance, and shot this pic of the insect with its wings closed....a very rare opportunity, as the Comma usually rests with its wings open...all is revealed....

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Did you spot the white comma shaped mark on the underside of the hind wing which gives it its name.....?

Secondly, and even stranger still, a few shots of a male Brimstone butterfly. Strange, because these butterflies are the harbingers of Spring, and usually only appear in March/April. When you first see a yellow Brimstone, you know that Spring has arrived! It's only the males that are yellow (the females are a very pale green or even white, but the distinctive, pointed wing shape quickly leads to the correct identification) The common name of Brimstone refers to the bright yellow colour of Sulphur (Brimstone is the old fashioned name for the aforementioned element). The distinguishing features are the colour, the uniquely pointed wingtips, the four dots on the wings, and the red antennae. These should be long gone by now. I can only assume that due to the warm weather, this is a product of a second brood.....anyway....for the bug lovers amongst us, enjoy....

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More here....http://www.ukbutterflies.co.uk/species.php?species=rhamni

Edited by Roger the Dodger

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Wow, what a thread!

I do apologise for not getting quite the way through it all but I did my best. I do want to thank Roger the Dodger specially for not only providing masses of wonderful photographs but also for giving snippets of useful and fascinating information. How you do it Rog, with your busy job on the estate, I don't know :)

No thanks needed, Honour, just one of the perks of the job....being able to see and record all of nature when ever it occurs. My camera never leaves my side ( or pocket! :lol: )

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