This blog provides an informal forum for terrestrial invertebrate watchers to post recent sightings of interesting observations in the southern Vancouver Island region. Please send your sightings by email to Jeremy Tatum (jtatum@uvic.ca). Be sure to include your name, phone number, the species name (common or scientific) of the invertebrate you saw, location, date, and number of individuals. If you have a photograph you are willing to share, please send it along. Click on the title above for an index of past sightings.The index is updated most days.

September 11

2019 September 11

 

   Jody Wells sends photographs of a dragonfly from Sluggett Reservoir, Brentwood Bay, September 10, and a spectacular White-lined Hawk Moth from McIntyre Reservoir, September 5.  Jeremy Tatum writes:  My apologies for misidentifying the dragonfly in the original posting.  Dr Rob Cannings has put me right.  Rob writes: This is an old male Sympetrum costiferum. Hard to see all the features, but the abdomen pattern is correct. Red venation (amber leading edge of wing present in younger individuals has faded away); red, black bordered stigma. Brown/red face. Brown to black legs. Fine black markings on sides of thorax not visible. Mature S. obtrusum always have a bright, white face. The abdomen has a strong triangular black patch on the side of each segment.

 

Saffron-winged Meadowhawk Sympetrum costiferum (Odo.: Libellulidae)  Jody Wells

White-lined Hawk Moth Hyles lineata (Lep.: Sphingidae) Jody Wells

   Gordon Hart sends a photograph of its close relative, the Bedstraw Hawk Moth, from the Petunias in his Highlands garden, Saptember 10.  Gordon writes:   * I enclose the blurry moth picture for identification, not for posting! *  Well, maybe it is not quite as crisp and sharp as Jody’s moth at rest, but I think viewers will agree that a sight like this is just too exciting not to share.  This is the fourth report this year of this species to Invert Alert.  We have had two adults and a caterpillar earlier in the year.

Bedstraw Hawk Moth Hyles gallii (Lep.: Sphingidae)  Gordon Hart

   Gordon also photographed a fresh Painted Lady also in his garden, September 10.

 

Painted Lady Vanessa cardui (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Gordon Hart

Jochen Möhr’s moths from Metchosin this morning.   As usual, a huge thanks  to Libby Avis for help with the identifications.

1 Drepanulatrix sp. 

1 Ennomos magnaria

1 Fishia illocata

6 Lacinipolia pensilis

1 Neoalcis californiaria

1 Noctua pronuba

1 Platyptilia carduidactylus

1 Udea profundalis  

4 Xestia finatimis-infimatis-verniloides complex

 


Lacinipolis pensilis (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jochen Möhr


Udea profundalis (Lep.: Crambidae)  Jochen Möhr


Platyptilia carduidactylus (Lep.: Pterophoridae)  Jochen Möhr

 

September 10

2019 September 10

   Jochen Möhr’s moths from Metchosin this morning:

1 Ennomos magnaria

1 Eulithis xylina

4 Euxoa difformis

1 Fishia illocata

8 Lacinipolia pensilis

1 Xanthorhoe defensaria 

4 Xestia . . . complex 

 


Euxoa difformis (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jochen Möhr


Xestia finatimis complex  (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jochen Möhr


Xestia finatimis complex  and Euxoa difformis (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jochen Möhr

   Jeremy Tatum shows a photograph of a Satellite Moth  reared on Rubus from a caterpillar from Munn Road.  Although the caterpillar of this moth can be reared quite happily on a vegetarian diet, as this one was, it is not averse from adding a little bit of extra protein to its diet, and is best reared separately from other caterpillars.  The moth emerges from its pupa in late summer or fall, and it spends the winter in the adult state.  It may be seen again in early spring.

 


Eupsilia tristigmata (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jeremy Tatum

 

September 9

2019 September 9

 

  Jochen Möhr’s moths from Metchosin this morning:

 

1 Ennomos magnaria

3 Euxoa difformis

1 Fishia illocata

1 Graphiphora augur

1 Lacinipolia patalis

3 Lacinipolia pensilis

1 Neoalcis californiaria

1 Parabagrotis sulinaris

3 Tetracis pallulata

1 Xestia finatimis complex

 

 


Tetracis pallulata (Lep.: Geometridae)   Jochen Möhr

 

 


Euxoa difformis (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jochen Möhr

 

 


Fishea illocata (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jochen Möhr

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

September 8 afternoon

2019 September 9 afternoon

 

    Jochen Möhr’s moths from Metchosin this morning:

 

1 Eupithecia sp.  

2 Euxoa difformis

4 Lacinipolia pensilis

1 Neoalcis californiaria

1 Tetracis pallulata

1 Xestia finatimis complex

 

…and photographs of a few of his moths from recent days.   Some photographs of some moths from the large genera Euxoa and Xestia probably cannot be identified safely to species.   We are grateful to Libby Avis for identifying these moths as far as probably can be done for these difficult groups.

 


Idia americalis  (Lep.: Erebidae – Herminiinae)  Jochen Möhr


Tetracis pallulata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr


Euxoa (probably difformis) (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jochen Möhr


Euxoa (probably difformis) (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jochen Möhr


Euxoa (probably difformis) (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jochen Möhr


Xestia finatimis/infimatis/verniloides complex

(Lep.: Noctuidae)   Jochen Möhr


Xestia finatimis/infimatis/verniloides complex

(Lep.: Noctuidae)   Jochen Möhr

    Jeremy Tatum writes:  I visited Panama Flats this afternoon, and the only butterflies I saw were 2 Cabbage Whites and 2 Woodland Skippers.  The butterfly season is coming to an end, so keep reporting any sightings.  September is the month for Yellow Woolly Bear caterpillars, and October is the month for Banded Woolly Bears, so keep an eye out for these.  Panama Flats is a good place for Banded Woolly Bears.

 

 

 

 

September 8 morning

2019 September 8 morning

 

   Jochen Möhr writes:  As some of you know already, I lately had fun with not only watching a butterfly (Painted Lady, Vanessa cardui) emerging from its chrysalis, but also recording the event. 

 

As the emergence became imminent, during the last 22 hours, I watched continuously for 13 hours – with the exception of from 10 pm on Sunday evening to 6 am on Monday morning.  

 

The event is documented in a five minute 32 second video.  Hope you’ll enjoy watching it:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_Cn4RcrAeY  

 

 

   Jeremy Tatum writes:  The Orgyia antiqua caterpillar (Vapourer or Rusty Tussock moth) shown yesterday today made the cocoon shown below.  I am hopeful that the moth will emerge this Fall, though I doubt whether I shall have the patience to see and record its emergence as Jochen recorded the emergence of the Painted Lady in the above remarkable video.

 


Orgyia antiqua (Lep.: Erebidae – Lymantriinae)  Jeremy Tatum

 

   Barb McGrenere sends a photograph of a caterpillar of the moth Nadata gibbosa from Observatory Hill this morning.  The caterpillar feeds on Garry Oak, although this individual has finished feeding and is on its way to find somewhere to pupate.  I am not certain about the small black dot on the first thoracic segment.  Let us hope that it is just a speck of dirt, though I have a slight fear that it might be a spot where a hymenopterous parasitoid had inserted its eggs. 

 


Nadata gibbosa (Lep.: Notodontidae)  Barb McGrenere