Thistle Head Weevil

Another week, another alien beetle eating an alien thistle. The BugLady found this pair of weevils while she was chasing Thistle tortoise beetles (clearly, it’s a weevil that gets a lot of mileage out of its food plant). And, in the “Ain’t the Internet Grand” category, a Google search for “weevil on thistle” resulted in a quick ID.

Thistle Tortoise Beetle

The BugLady was wandering the trails at Forest Beach Migratory Preserve recently when she spied a lovely green Thistle Tortoise Beetle on Canada thistle. Tortoise beetles have made previous BOTW appearances in the form of the Mottled tortoise beetle in 2014 and the Horsemint tortoise beetle in 2016. After she saw an adult, the BugLady started looking for larvae on some of the scruffier-looking plants.

Stag Beetle Lucanus Placidus

The BugLady now lives on the edge of a sand dune, with some pine and spruce around the edges, and she’s looking forward to meeting her new six and eight-legged neighbors. This stag beetle is the first species to step up (thanks, BugFan Becca, for the fancy footwork).

Lightning Beetle Again

OK – this is a love story of sorts. It’s an episode that originated in 2009, and it has already been rerun once and now rewritten again. But…..the BugLady just returned from southern Ohio, where she co-led a workshop about Bugs and Wonder (an unappreciated, sometimes suspect, and insufficiently-entertained state of mind) (and mostly we could say that about the bugs, too). We trawled the prairies and woods for bugs during the day, and at dusk and into the night, we hunted for fireflies.

River Damsels Revisited

The BugLady is still on hiatus but plans to get back in the saddle soon. She spent a magic day at the river recently, where the bushes were sparkling with Ebony Jewelwings. This is a slightly modified version of an episode from 2011 – some new words, all new pictures.

Crayfish Revisited

Still in the process of moving, and it’s May, so another re-run. The BugLady dusted off another decade-old episode (yes, BugFan Laurel – 10 years!!!) and added new pictures and information. And yes, as always, the BugLady is using a rather inclusive definition of the word “bug.”

Bumble Bee Redux

The BugLady has been out enjoying the spring warbler migration, and as she searches the branches for birds, she’s also loving the soundtrack – the echo of Wood Thrushes and the buzz of early bumblebees. She wrote this episode ten years ago, and then in 2014, she “Celebrated Bumblebees.” Here’s an updated version of the 2008 episode – some new words, all new pictures

Bug o’the Week – Mining Bee rerun

The first of the spring reruns, an episode from April of 2010.
“Pussy willow” is a name that refers specifically to a willow shrub called Salix discolor but is commonly applied to several small willow species (and few of us can actually tell them apart, anyway). It blooms early and copiously; the sleek, fuzzy, grey buds (an early stage of the male catkins) soon mature, producing pollen-bearing structures and attracting bunches of early spring pollinators. Especially mining bees (family Andrenidae), which are among the first flying pollinators of the year.

Bugs in the News – The Videos

In past years, the BugLady has taken off during the month of May or June to refresh her sadly depleted “BOTW Future” file with new images of emerging insects, and she plans to do that. BUT – she’s also in the process of moving out of a house that she’s lived in for 40 years (rule of thumb – if you haven’t seen it/thought about it/used it for 10 years or so, you probably don’t need it). St. Vinnies’ is thrilled. The BugLady is thrilled that she’ll go forward with about 1/3 of her present worldly possessions.

Speed-Dating the Spiders II – Ghost Spiders

This is the second of an occasional series begun last week with house spiders, and (belatedly) titled “Speed-dating the Spiders.” In this weeks Bug of the Week, the BugLady is looking at Ghost Spiders, nocturnal spiders that have a pale appearance. There are 500 different species globally, but only 37 in North America.