23 de junio de 2022

Learning Experiences: A Collection of Observations

Here are some observations I made that I remember or would like to remember because I learned valuable information from learning them. This post will serve as a repository not only for myself but for anyone else who may stumble upon it and could learn along with me. Note that this post will be subject to change. The pursuit of knowledge is a continual process and I will surely make more observations of this nature going forward, which will be added here. Due to this, if this is of interest to you, perhaps check back here on occasion.

Bad-Wing Moth (You mean that's not an emerald?! Wow!)
Interesting wasp resting posture

Mystery Knotweed Virus
My first Land Planarian
Bryozoans are fascinating!

Ingresado el 23 de junio de 2022 por mercedes-fletcher mercedes-fletcher | 10 observaciones | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

31 de marzo de 2022

Characteristic Traits of Lepidopteran Families

Note that this journal is by no means exhaustive and does not contain every family, nor every way to identify them. I'm mostly keeping this here as a quick reference for myself while IDing. I may update this in the future as I learn more!

  • Apatelodidae (Apatelodid Moths)
    Medium-sized
    Shades of grey and brown with wavy patterns, though less dense than some Geometrids
    Wings are held flatly at rest, with the hindwings concealed
    Large tufts of hair on the upper potions of the legs, which are absent on the lower half of the legs

  • Crambidae (Crambid Snout Moths)
    Tiny to Small in size
    Have elongated face parts which appear snoutlike
    Very broad and large family

  • Geometridae (Geometer Moths)
    Medium-sized moths with cryptic or green coloring
    Wavy patterns with many or few lines, often extending across both the forewing and hindwing continuously
    Larvae only have legs at the ends of their bodies and move in an "inchworm" fashion

  • Hesperiidae (Skipper Butterflies)
    Small butterflies that fly in a characteristic darting flight pattern
    Antennae have a hook or club shape on the end
    Larger bodies and more neutral colors compared to other butterflies make them appear moth-like

  • Lasiocampidae (Lappet Moths)
    Plump, fluffy bodies which are elongated and often extend past the hindwings
    Rest with wings in a roof formation and often with the frontmost pair of legs extended forward
    Antennae are feather/fern-shaped along their entire length (in contrast with notodontidae, which may have partially pectinated or even completely straight antennae)

  • Lycaenidae (Gossamer-Winged Butterflies)
    Small butterflies, similar in size to skippers
    Grey, spotted undersides with brightly colored (Usually blue, orange or brown) dorsal sides
    Some species have "tails", similar to swallowtails

  • Notodontidae (Prominent Moths)
    Large and fluffy, similar to Lasiocampidae though with less elongated bodies
    Hold wings in roof formation or rolled at rest, with smaller species looking like sticks

  • Nymphalidae (Brush-Footed Butterflies)
    A very broad group which can be many sizes, small to large
    Wing marges may be smooth or irregular, with some having tail-like shapes on the hindwings
    Brightly colored and often black with prominent yellow, red, or orange markings

  • Megalopygidae (Flannel moths)
    Medium-sized with extra fluffy, plump bodies
    Broad wings held in roof formation at rest
    Simple colorations with few or no markings
    Larval stages of some species have painful stings!

  • Pterophoridae (Plume Moths)
    Small
    Characteristic T-shape at rest, slender wings
    Usually neutral coloration

  • Papilionidae (Swallowtail Butterflies)
    Medium to Large in size
    Very often have "tails", though not always
    Similar coloration to Nymphalidae

  • Pyalidae (Pyralid Moths)
    Highly variable and broad family
    Typically have "snouts" like Crambidae
    Many different possible resting postures

  • Saturniidae (Giant Silk Moths)
    Small to Extremely Large, including many of the world's largest moths
    Plump bodies and broad wings usually held to their sides at rest with the hindwings exposed
    Feather or Fern-like antennae which are bushier in males
    Some groups, such as Actias, have tails!

  • Schreckensteiniidae (Bristle-legged Moths)
    A small family with few species, not often seen
    Tiny in size
    Spined legs that appear similar to small, thorned branches
    Legs are raised when at rest

  • Sesiidae (Sesiid Moths)
    Small to Medium-Large moths
    Heavy bodies relative to their delicate, often clear wings
    Almost all species in this family mimic wasps, hornets, bees, etc

  • Sphingidae (Sphinx Moths)
    Medium to Large moths
    Rest with their pointed forewings concealing their hindwings, in a characteristic "W" shape"
    May have simple and cryptic colors or dizzyingly complex and bright patterns

  • Tortricidae (Tortricid Moths)
    Small moths in shades of brown or gray
    Wings are held in a flattened roof formation, giving them an arrowhead-like shape

  • Yponomeutidae (Yponomeutid Moths)
    Very tiny
    More colorful compared to other micromoth groups, many have orange colors
    Rest with rolled wings and often one end raised, similar to many moths in Crambidae

  • Zygaenidae (Zygaenid Moths)
    Small, day-flying moths
    Elongated, oval-shaped wings
    Generally metallic and shiny, with prominent red, yellow or orange markings

Ingresado el 31 de marzo de 2022 por mercedes-fletcher mercedes-fletcher | 10 observaciones | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

07 de febrero de 2022

~ Featured Observations ~

Hello! I will use this journal to keep track of the observations I am most proud of. They may be the first in an area or uncommonly seen there, iNat firsts, species I have a special interest in, or ones that I was able to get very high-quality photographs of. I considered making a list, but those are only for species and not specific observations, so I'll do it here. This makes it easier for me to find them again and keep track of some of my achievements. This will be updated when I make more of them so be sure to check back sometime! Thank you for stopping by.


~Mysteries and Mutants~
Taraxacum officinale, Fasciated: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/112891890

~ Local Oddities ~

Nymphalis I-album, rare in Ohio: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/97922038

Catocala unijuga, 11th observation in Ohio at the time: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/94164481

Scaphoideus immistus, first observation in Ohio: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/90487992

Cryptops hortensis, first observation in Ohio: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/98173899

Leucanthemum × superbum, first observation in West Virginia: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/116194649

~ iNat Firsts ~

Balcanocerus crataegi, first RG observation of an obscure leafhopper species: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/88084935

~ Species of Concern~

Larus delawarensis, vulnerable in Ohio: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/95221951
Setophaga americana, vulnerable in Ohio: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/113245597
Quiscalus quiscula, near threatened: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/109251028
Tsuga canadensis, near threatened: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/117202915#activity_identification_e8af1ddd-1977-483b-adf8-35e7d96b74bf

~ Favorite Photos ~

Antheraea polyphemus: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/87953326

The first photo I ever managed to get of Crambus sp. : https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/86926238

Polites peckius: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/85284208

Speyeria cybele: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/88606291

Sawfly larva: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/120434178

~ Other Fascinating Finds ~

Pectinatella magnifica, fascinating organism I was previously unaware of: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/95345487

Mysterious Japanese Knotweed Virus: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/120426406

Ingresado el 07 de febrero de 2022 por mercedes-fletcher mercedes-fletcher | 17 observaciones | 2 comentarios | Deja un comentario

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