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.

May 19 afternoon

2019 May 19 afternoon

 

   Jeremy Tatum writes:  Here’s a nice caterpillar from Snowberry on Mount Tolmie this morning:


Sicya macularia (Lep.: Geometridae)   Jeremy Tatum

 

   The Nature House at Goldstream Park is often a good place to find moths.  I was there this afternoon and I saw one each pristine perfect Acronicta impressa and Probole americana, perfectly placed for photography – and of course I didn’t have my camera with me.  Elsewhere in the park I saw a Cedar Hairstreak butterfly.

   Val George writes:  This Stink Bug was in my Oak Bay garden today, May 19.  Looks to me like Banasa dimiata. [Jeremy Tatum writes:  Yes, I think so, too.  Just like one that Terry Thormin identified for us on May 10.]

Red-backed Stink Bug Banasa dimiata (Hem.: Pentatomidae)  Val George

 

   Jeff Gaskin and Ron Flower both report that on Friday May 17, there were at least two (Jeff) or six (Ron) Silvery Blues in their usual location among the lupines at the Colwood exit from Highway 1.  The first photograph below shows a female in the act of ovipositing on a lupine.

Silvery Blue Glaucopsyche lygdamus (Lep.: Lycaenidae) Ron Flower

Silvery Blue Glaucopsyche lygdamus (Lep.: Lycaenidae) Ron Flower

 

May 19 morning

2018 May 19 morning

 

         Jochen Möhr’s moths in Metchosin this morning:

 

Lacinipolia cuneata 1
Drepana arcuata 1
Drepanulatrix sp.   1
Egira perlubens  2
Perizoma costiguttata 1
Perizoma curvilinea 1
Tyria jacobaeae 3
Venusia obsoleta 4

 

 

 

 


Lacinipolia cuneata (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jochen Möhr

 



Egira perlubens (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jochen Möhr

 


Drepana arcuata (Lep.: Drepanidae) Jochen Möhr

 

   Libby Avis saw her first Polyphemus Moth of the year at Port Alberni yesterday.

 

   Aziza Cooper writes:  Yesterday evening, May 18 at 7:30pm, I found two Painted Ladies on the north summit of Christmas Hill. The rock was still warm from the sun, although it was cloudy.

 

Painted Lady Vanessa cardui (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Aziza Cooper

 

 

   Marie O’Shaughnessy writes: Yesterday afternoon between 4-5 pm, May 18th,  I saw 3 Propertius Duskywings in the open areas near the  fading camas meadows on Mount Tolmie. Later I stopped off at the reservoir area and found a Western Spring Azure and 2 Painted Ladies. Also a brief sighting of a swallowtail.  It took off just as I arrived so unable to confirm species. 

 

Propertius Duskywing Erynnis propertius (Lep.: Hesperiidae)  Marie O’Shaughnessy

 

Propertius Duskywing Erynnis propertius (Lep.: Hesperiidae)  Marie O’Shaughnessy

 

Painted Lady Vanessa cardui (Lep.: Nymphalidae)   Marie O’Shaughnessy

 

May 18 evening

2018 May 18 evening

 

   Gordon Hart writes:

Hello Butterfly Counters,

I have been away from Victoria, so I am sorry for the late announcement, but we will go ahead with a May Butterfly Count, starting today, May 18, and running until next Sunday, May 25. You can submit a count anytime over this period, and you can do more than one count, just use a separate form for each count. In the case of repeat counts, or more than one person counting an area, I will take the highest count for each species.

Please use the form at http://www.vicnhs.bc.ca/?p=33 on the Victoria Natural History Society website .

The count area is the same as the Christmas Bird Count circle (attached). For butterfly identification there are numerous internet sites, but most or all Victoria species are listed on E-Fauna. If you select by photographer, all the photos under James Miskelly’s name are of Victoria species. Here is the link: http://linnet.geog.ubc.ca/efauna/photoGallery/Gallery.aspx?gr=showall&pid=175&photographer=miskelly,%20james&specrep=0

 

If you would like a suggestion for an area to count, please send me an email. 

In addition to the counts, a monthly butterfly walk is held on the first Sunday of each month – the next walk will be on June 2. We start at the summit of Mount Tolmie at 1pm, and decide where to go from there. I will send out another reminder the week before. 

Thank-you for submitting your sightings and happy counting! 

Gordon Hart,

Butterfly Count Coordinator,

Victoria Natural History Society

 

 

   Jeremy Tatum writes:  Bill Savale and I went to the railway line around Malahat Station and the surrounding hills today, and we saw a Mourning Cloak and a Two-banded Grizzled Skipper.

 

   Jochen Möhr writes:  I went up Single Hill behind our home with Kem Luther today.  We came across many Western Spring Azures, but because of a boisterous breeze, taking pictures was even more problematic than usual with these little lively beasties.  Coming down to our house, there were many Western Spring Azures fluttering about – at least four seen simultaneously.  I got a picture of a female on budding blossoms of Ocean Spray.  It might have been ovipositing, but even using a magnifying glass and scrutinizing the branch after it had left, I could not find an egg.  The male was mud puddling in a flower bed  that we had watered thoroughly last afternoon.  [Jeremy Tatum writes:  You have to search on the outside of the calyces of flower buds that are just about to open.  From what you describe (“budding blossoms”) I suspect your butterfly was indeed ovipositing.]

 

 

Male Western Spring Azure Celastrina echo (Lep.: Lycaenidae)  Jochen Möhr

 

   Ron Flower writes:  Today Saturday May 18 we went to Eddy’s storage 1064 Stelly’s Cross Road at 1:30 pm and found the Field Crescents very active. We saw about 10 but could have been more.

 

Field Crescent Phyciodes pratensis (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Ron Flower

May 18 morning

2019 May 18 morning

 

   Cheryl Hoyle sends a photograph of an American Lappet Moth from Highrock Park, Esquimalt, yesterday.

 

American Lappet Moth Phyllodesma americana (Lep.: Lasiocampidae)  Cheryl Hoyle

 

   Jeremy Tatum writes that the pupating Lorquin’s Admiral caterpillar shown yesterday has now pupated:

 

Lorquin’s Admiral Limenitis lorquini (Lep.: Nymphalidae)

Jeremy Tatum

 

      Jochen Möhr’s moths in Metchosin this morning:

 

Drepanulatrix sp.   2
Perizoma curvilinea 1
Plagodis phlogosaria  1
Tyria jacobaeae 1
Venusia obsoleta 1

 


Plagodis phlogosaria (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 

May 17

2019 May 17

 

   Jeremy Tatum writes:  Here is a Lorquin’s Admiral caterpillar preparing to pupate:

 

Lorquin’s Admiral Limenitis lorquini (Lep.: Nymphalidae)

Jeremy Tatum

 

   Jeremy Tatum continues:  At Panama Flats this afternoon I saw an American Lady.

I also found a caterpillar (shown below) of an Essex Skipper on Reed Canary Grass.

 

Essex Skipper Thymelicus lineola (Lep.: Hesperiidae)  Jeremy Tatum

 

   There was nothing on the Mount Tolmie reservoir at 6:00 pm today, but there were three Painted Ladies near the Jeffery Pine nearby.