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.

January 5, 2014

   Jeremy Tatum writes:  I got a splendid present for Christmas – Mike Yip and James Miskelly’s brand new book Vancouver Island Butterflies.  I don’t know how many are left in the bookstores, but if you haven’t got yours yet, I should go and get one quick, while they are still available.  A must-have!

 

   Jeremy Tatum writes:  We were delighted to hear from the celebrated author and Booker Prize nominee Indra Sinha, from Sussex, England, who suggests that Guy Monty’s Catocala shown on the September 18 posting on this site may be Catocala briseis.  Some of these Cats can be quite difficult, but I agree that briseis certainly seems to be a good fit to Monty’s photos.

 

  Jeremy Tatum writes:  I didn’t expect to see Autographa californica at this time of year, but one turned up at my Saanich apartment on December 13,

 

Autographa californica (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

  Two comments so far on the proposal (in BC Nature mentioned in our December 12 posting) to introduce European butterflies to Salt Spring Island.

 

   Mike Yip writes: 

 I certainly hope the plan to introduce alien butterflies is defeated. The proponents of the idea must be related to the people who thought introducing Starlings and House Sparrows was a good idea. If these people have time and money to waste they should be working on protecting natural habitats and saving our native species.

 

 

   Aziza Cooper writes:

Is this person planning to release the introduced butterflies? Or will they be on display in an enclosed butterfly garden? If he is planning to release them, it’s difficult to forecast the effects of introductions, but so many plant and animal introductions have been so negative. House Sparrows, Starlings, Scotch Broom and Cane Toads are all disastrous lessons for us.  Wouldn’t it be a better idea for him to work on enhancing and promoting native butterflies, instead of bringing in non-natives?

 

   Jeremy Tatum responds:  I read the article a few times, and I have to say that it is not clear as to whether he is planning to display the butterflies in an enclosure, or whether he is planning to release them into the wild.  In either case it strikes me as an extraordinarily bad and irresponsible idea, and probably illegal.  I cannot imagine for a moment any arm of government issuing a permit for this.  As all naturalists know, we have an enormous number of introduced organisms of all kinds here.  One could easily add to  Mike’s and Aziza’s examples – Ivy, Spurge Laurel, Brown Rat and so on.  The only European butterfly that has taken hold here is the Cabbage White – hardly a welcome addition to our fauna.

 

  One might ask what are likely to be the adverse effects from introducing a few butterflies, most of which are nettle-feeders in the larval stage?  A brief answer is that I do not know – which is one of the strongest arguments for not introducing them.  One can rarely predict the effects of foreign introductions.  One thing that could be predicted – the Small Tortoiseshell would inevitably interbreed with our Milbert’s Tortoiseshell.  Or again in nature, the numbers of many of these butterflies are controlled by species-specific parasitoids, and, if these are absent on Salt Spring Island, the numbers of the introduced butterflies could multiply beyond control, to the detriment of our native species.  Mike and Aziza are quite right – we should all be encouraged to work on enhancing and promoting native butterflies, instead of bringing in non-natives.

 

2014 December 12

Jeremy Tatum writes:

The current (Winter 2014) issue of BC Nature includes an article in which it is proposed to introduce large numbers of European butterflies (such as Peacock and Map butterflies) to Salt Spring Island. These are to be obtained from a commercial supplier in England, known as World Wide Butterflies. The proposed butterflies include Painted Ladies which have been “specially designed” and have been artificially reared for generations on Stinging Nettles, which are not their usual foodplant here. The author is applying for a permit from Parks Canada.

This site would welcome short comments. Some viewers might also want to send comments to BC Nature or perhaps also to Parks Canada.

The article is illustrated with photographs of three butterflies. One is our native Milbert’s Tortoiseshell. Another is the Peacock butterfly, well known in Britain. The third is labelled “Red Admiral”. Viewers of this site who have seen the article will recognize that this is not the Vanessa atalanta commonly known here and in Britain as the Red Admiral, and may wonder what the illustrated butterfly is. It is in fact Vanessa gonerilla, a New Zealand endemic, known there as the New Zealand Red Admiral.

2014 December 04

The introduced European Winter Moth Operophtera brumata is usually a rather featureless grey (like the November 10 photograph), although some specimens can be quite well patterned. I think the European one is the one most often (almost exclusively?) seen in Victoria. The native Bruce’s Winter Moth O. bruceata (which Bill Katz and Jeremy Tatum have found at Goldstream Park), is usually well patterned. Annie Pang sends a photo of a winter moth from her kitchen window in Victoria. Although it is well patterned, Jeremy Tatum and Jeremy Gatten believe that this is a European Winter Moth O. brumata.

invertalert clip image002 0082

Winter Moth Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Annie Pang

September to December 2014

2014 December 12

Jeremy Tatum writes:

The current (Winter 2014) issue of BC Nature includes an article in which it is proposed to introduce large numbers of European butterflies (such as Peacock and Map butterflies) to Salt Spring Island. These are to be obtained from a commercial supplier in England, known as World Wide Butterflies. The proposed butterflies include Painted Ladies which have been “specially designed” and have been artificially reared for generations on Stinging Nettles, which are not their usual foodplant here. The author is applying for a permit from Parks Canada.

This site would welcome short comments. Some viewers might also want to send comments to BC Nature or perhaps also to Parks Canada.

The article is illustrated with photographs of three butterflies. One is our native Milbert’s Tortoiseshell. Another is the Peacock butterfly, well known in Britain. The third is labelled “Red Admiral”. Viewers of this site who have seen the article will recognize that this is not the Vanessa atalanta commonly known here and in Britain as the Red Admiral, and may wonder what the illustrated butterfly is. It is in fact Vanessa gonerilla, a New Zealand endemic, known there as the New Zealand Red Admiral.

2014 December 04

The introduced European Winter Moth Operophtera brumata is usually a rather featureless grey (like the November 10 photograph), although some specimens can be quite well patterned. I think the European one is the one most often (almost exclusively?) seen in Victoria. The native Bruce’s Winter Moth O. bruceata (which Bill Katz and Jeremy Tatum have found at Goldstream Park), is usually well patterned. Annie Pang sends a photo of a winter moth from her kitchen window in Victoria. Although it is well patterned, Jeremy Tatum and Jeremy Gatten believe that this is a European Winter Moth O. brumata.


Winter Moth Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae) Annie Pang

2014 November 28

Winter Moths are abundant everywhere now. I have been seeing clouds of the flying males in my car’s headlamps at night. Here is a flightless female from my Saanich apartment on November 25. We have had some spectacular creatures on this site. This is perhaps one of the less spectacular ones. Jeremy Tatum


Winter Moth Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae)
Jeremy Tatum

2014 November22

No recent reports of interesting invertebrates, but Aziza Cooper writes:

Hi Jeremy, Mike Yip was kind enough to give me a copy of his and James Miskelly’s’ lovely new book: Vancouver Island Butterflies. He writes that he’s had some enthusiastic comments from Norbert Kondla, Cris Guppy and Dr. David James.

I’ll add my own comment: this book is a must for local butterfly chasers, and I’m already looking forward to chasing some of the more elusive species next year.

The book is available now in several Victoria bookstores: Munro’s, Bolen and Ivy’s, and Tanners in Sidney as well as at Victoria Camera Repair.

It would be nice if you could mention it on the InvertAlert. I’ll understand if you don’t feel it’s appropriate to post an ad for Mike’s book, but I would really like to support his efforts. The book is the only book on Vancouver Island butterflies. I’m sure your readers would be interested, and it would make a great Christmas gift.

Jeremy comments: I’ve already asked Santa to get me one for Christmas. I hope I’ve been good during most of the year.

2014 November 14

Aziza Cooper writes:  While looking for the Cattle Egret in Vic West on November 10, I had two sightings of Cabbage White. The first was at the east end of the Johnson Street bridge, flying past ornamental trees at the Wharf Street and Johnson Street intersection. The second may have been a different individual. It was at the Cattle Egret location near the Bayview condo towers. It was on the green space between the condos and the railroad tracks, west of Tyee Road. These are the latest butterflies I’ve seen in Victoria.

2014 November 10

Winter Moth season has arrived. Jeremy Tatum photographed the first one he has seen this season at his Saanich apartment on November 10. They will probably be seen everywhere on a daily basis from now on during November and December.


Winter Moth Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae) Jeremy Tatum

Gordon Hart writes: I saw the bug in the pictures below on November 5 at Viaduct Flats on the viewing platform. With the continuing warm weather, I saw a large Aeshna dragonfly – probably a Paddle-Tailed Darner A. palmata – on November 5 at Viaduct Flats, and again on November 6, at home during a sunny break. I guess they will continue until we have a cold spell.


Western Conifer Seed Bug Leptoglossus occidentalis (Hem.: Coreidae) Gordon Hart

 

2014 November 6

   Aziza Cooper sends a picture of Erannis vancouverensis on the glass of her back door at Brighton Avenue and Foul Bay.  Very similar to Bill Katz’s November 2 photo – also on the glass of his back door!   The more I look at these moths, the more I am convinced that there really is no such animal as Erannis vancouverensis, and the moth is in fact, like the Winter Moth, a European invader, namely the Mottled Umber Erannis defoliaria.

Jeremy Tatum

Erannis vancouverensis (Lep.: Geometridae) Aziza Cooper

   We are by now well past summer, but it is still possible to find caterpillars.  Jeremy Tatum found this one at Martindale Flats on November 1.  Another European invader!

Large Yellow Underwing Noctua pronuba (Lep.:Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 November 1

Mike Yip writes: My books [see October 22 Invert Alert for a notice about Mike’s book on V.I. butterflies] arrived early and I’m delivering down your way on Nov. 3. Munro’s, Bolen, and Tanners are all on board, and I have about a dozen orders from various individuals.

Bill Katz writes: An Erannis vancouverensis on our building front door, my first of the season, is greeting Hallowe’en visitors on Summit Hill.

eran

Erannis vancouverensis (Lep.:Geometridae) Bill Katz

Jeremy Tatum found the spider below at Swan Lake on October 29. Robb Bennett, who kindly identified it, writes: Your beast is one of BC’s half dozen or so mygalomorphs. A male of Antrodiaetus pacificus. One of my personal favourites!

In case anyone is wondering what a mygalomorph is, the Mygalomorphae are a suborder of spiders characterized by downward-pointing chelicerae, including funnelweb, trapdoor, and purseweb spiders. The Antrodiaetidae are trapdoor spiders. They are very appropriate animals to see at Hallowe’en.

andro

Antrodiaetus pacificus (Ara.: Antrodiaetidae) Jeremy Tatum

Jeremy continues: The two animals shown below, photographed in my Saanich apartment in the last few days, are members of the Order Thysanura (three-pronged bristletails), Family Lepismatidae (silverfish and firebrats). Both are firebrats. The first is the Common Firebrat Thermobia domestica. The second might possibly be a colour variety of the same animal, but I believe it is more likely a different species, namely the Grey Firebrat Ctenolepisma longicaudata. While interesting, they were uninvited guests in my apartment and were beginning to make themselves unwelcome. Who will rid me of this turbulent animal? (That’s a misquotation from Henry II.) The answer is Marlin Smyth, whom many of you will know, and who is an experienced professional. He came to rid me of them yesterday morning, and I haven’t seen any since.

Firebrat

Common Firebrat Thermobia domestica (Thy.: Lepismatidae) Jeremy Tatum

GreyFirebrat

Grey Firebrat Ctenolepisma longicaudata (Thy.: Lepismatidae) Jeremy Tatum

Although the butterfly season is winding down, there are still lots of other terrestrial invertebrates to see, such as the slug below, Limax maximus, from the Martindale Valley, November 1. It is variously known as the Great Grey Slug or the Giant Garden Slug. These slugs mate by wrapping themselves around each other and writhing while suspended from a rope of slime.

Limax

Limax maximus (Pul.: Limacidae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 October 28

Aziza Cooper writes: On October 21, a  Cabbage White was at the Orange Sulphur location along Martindale Road, north across from the kiwi farm. This is one of the more likely places to find one to try and extend the butterfly season into November! Thanks to Claudia Copley for identifying a grasshopper that Aziza photographed in August. We’ll let viewers scroll down to September 5 to see what it was!


Cabbage White Pieris rapae (Lep.: Pieridae) Aziza Cooper

Jeremy Tatum sends a photograph of Cucullia montanae from Island View Beach, October 23. It wears a hood (Latin Cucullus) over its head.


Cucullia montanae (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

Gordon Hart found a geometrid on October 9, but so far we have not been able to identify it. Suggestions welcome.


Unknown geometrid – Gordon Hart

Jeremy Tatum photographed a spider in his Saanich apartment building on October 25.
He writes: You can patiently explain to me all day that they are perfectly harmless, but I’m still scared of them! Robb Bennett writes: It’s a female gnaphosid, probably the introduced Palaearctic species Scotophaeus blackwalli. That species is common in various parts of the world but is a relatively recent introduction here. Robb also points out that other gnaphosid genera, such as Gnaphosa, Zelotes and Drassylus, also look somewhat similar – hence the “probably” Scotophaeus blackwalli. These other genera, he writes, are less likely to be found indoors than Scotophaeus blackwalli.

 


Probably Scotophaeus blackwalli (Ara.: Gnaphosidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

Jeremy also photographed a caddisfly in the building. There is usually an expert in any obscure subject out there somewhere – so is there someone who can identify the caddisfly for us?


Caddisfly (Trichoptera) Jeremy Tatum

2014 October 22

Mike Yip writes that his book VANCOUVER ISLAND BUTTERFLIES is currently at the printers in Altona, Manitoba and should be available by Nov. 7. Mike is the principal author and photographer, and James Miskelly collaborated with the updated distribution maps for all 70 species on the Island list. The book is full colour, hard cover, 128 pages, and will be available in some bookstores (Munro’s and Tanners so far) for $34.95 plus GST. However, naturalists and butterfly enthusiasts can get their copies for $25 each if someone is willing to collect cheques, make a group order, and hold the books for pick up. Email Mike if anyone is interested (mikyip@hotmail.com).

Jeff Gaskin writes: On October the 21st, there were two Cabbage Whites along Maddock Avenue at Qu’appelle Avenue. [Only a few more days now before November – can we extend the butterfly season into that month? – Jeremy Tatum]

At last we have managed to identify the caterpillars found by Gwen Greenwood (2011 November 11) and Bud Logan (2012 October 12). On October 19 Jeremy Gatten found a similar one in Devonian Park and he found a description (no picture!) of it in a 1958 Proceedings of the Entomological Society of British Columbia. It is Lophocampa roseata.


Lophocampa roseata (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae) Jeremy Gatten

 

Jeremy Gatten also found two individuals of Orthosia mys at his Saanichton house a few days ago. It is of interest to compare this moth with photographs of the somewhat similar Orthosia transparens which appeared on this site for 2011 April 6 and 24, and 2013 March 30.


Orthosia mys (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Gatten


Orthosia mys (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Gatten

2014 October 20

Jeremy Tatum reports a Cabbage White from Island View Road on October 19. I wonder if we can extend the butterfly season into November?

Jeremy shows a photograph of a White-lined Hawk Moth from Martindale Flats, October 19.


White-lined Hawk Moth Hyles lineata (Lep.: Sphingidae) Jeremy Tatum

Gordon Hart writes: We saw one Cabbage White in the Highlands today October 18, and one day-flying moth. I think it is Autographa californica as per your book (http://facweb.furman.edu/~snyderjohn/tatum/) and Bill Katz’s picture of September 23. [See also Aziza Cooper’s of August 9 – Jeremy.] It landed first on some yellow chrysanthemums and then on dandelions. Your book says it is migratory but I’m afraid this one won’t be going anywhere. Just as I was framing another shot, a junco swooped in and grabbed it for a snack. Jeremy Tatum responds: Yes, Bill Savale and I also saw several Cabbage Whites in the Vantreight Central Saanich fields on October 18, as well as an equally incautious Autographa californica. It was so intent on nectaring on Raphanus that it allowed me to catch it in a jar to verify the identification, before releasing it.

 


Autographa californica (Lep.: Noctuidae) Gordon Hart

Bill Katz writes: The walls of the Goldstream Nature House were a moth paradise on Saturday morning, October 18. I identified Epirrita autumnata and Tetracis jubararia [also known as Synaxis jubarariaJeremy].

 


Autumnal Moth Epirrita autumnata (Lep.: Geometridae) Bill Katz


Autumnal Moth Epirrita autumnata (Lep.: Geometridae) Bill Katz

 


October Thorn Tetracis jubararia (Lep.: Geometridae) Bill Katz


2014 October 17

Daniel Dönnecke sends a photograph of a yellow underwing moth Noctua sp. from Swan Lake, October 16. The clear absence of a dark crescent in the middle of the hindwing shows that it is in fact the Large Yellow Underwing Noctua pronuba rather than the somewhat similar Lesser Yellow Underwing Noctua comes.

Viewers may also notice a bird in the photograph. It is a Tropical Kingbird Tyrannus melancholicus (Pas.: Tyrannidae).


Large Yellow Underwing Noctua pronuba (Lep.: Noctuidae) Daniel Dönnecke

2014 October 15

Jeremy Tatum saw a Cabbage White outside his Saanich apartment on October 11.
He found another Autographa californica caterpillar, at Martindale Flats, October 12, feeding upon Raphanus. And there are lots of Isabella caterpillars (Banded Woolly Bears) around, especially at Panama Flats and Swan Lake, where the one below was found.


Autographa californica (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum


Banded Woolly Bear Pyrrharctia isabella (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae) Jeremy Tatum

These caterpillars are very attractive and visible at this time of year, and I dare say some viewers may be tempted to keep one to see what sort of moth eventually emerges. This is an interesting thing to do, but maybe it is worth knowing, for those who haven’t reared many moths from caterpillars, that Pyrrharctia isabella is not an easy caterpillar to rear – indeed one might say it is one of the more difficult ones – and perhaps not to be recommended for a first attempt. One problem is that it will not pupate until about next March, and it won’t eclode until May, so you’d have to look after it all winter. You may be able to find one outside in February – and then they are much easier. If you are curious to see what the adult looks like, there are photographs on this site for May 25, 2010 and 2012. May 25 seems to be a good date to find the adult!

Caterpillars are not the only things that creep and crawl.. Here is a slug from the garden of my apartment, October 11.


Arion subfuscus (Pul.: Arionidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

Bill Katz sends a photograph of an October Thorn Synaxis jubararia [also known as Tetracis jubararia – I’m not sure what its name is this year — Jeremy] from his productive Summit Hill garage.


October Thorn Tetracis jubararia (Lep.:Geometridae) Bill Katz

2014 October 10

Jeff Gaskin writes: There were over 10 Banded Woolly Bears at Panama Flats on Tuesday October 7. Last year, if I recall, there was a huge number of Banded Woolly Bears here too. [Yes – that’s what I remember, too. – Jeremy]

There are other caterpillars still to be found. The one shown below was found at McMicking Point on October 5. It is Autographa californica. It is a plusiine. That is to say it belongs to the subfamily Plusiinae of the family Noctuidae. The caterpillars of most plusiines are “semi-loopers”. They have only two pairs of mid-abdominal prolegs rather than the usual four.


Autographa californica (Lep.: Noctuidae – Plusiinae) Jeremy Tatum

 

Jeremy Tatum writes: Here are two moths from my Saanich apartment on October 10. One is the abundant European Large Yellow Underwing. The other is a species of Drepanulatrix. I have had difficulties with the identification of Drepanulatrix moths before and I may have to revisit previous images of this genus in the Website. However, I am pretty sure the moth shown below is Drepanulatrix monicaria, although, strangely, this species does not appear to be on the Lafontaine/Troubridge list for Canada, at least not under this name.


Noctua pronuba (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum


Drepanulatrix monicaria (Lep.: Geometridae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 October 7

Val George writes: Here is another nice fresh Painted Lady, this one seen at Cattle Point, October 7, with the Tuesday birding group. I got a photo of this one.


Painted Lady Vanessa cardui (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Val George

Jeremy Tatum writes that there were still lots of Cabbage Whites around on October 6. The caterpillar season isn’t quite over yet. October is the month to see caterpillars of the Banded Woolly Bear – I saw several at Swan Lake on October 6. And I spotted an interesting caterpillar, shown below, below on Cornus stolonifera at Swan Lake on October 5. The sharply contrasting colours disguise the (already weird) shape of the caterpillar. This is called disruptive coloration.


Unicorn Prominent Schizura unicornis (Lep.: Notodontidae)
Jeremy Tatum

2014 October 4

Val George writes: On October 1 there was a Painted Lady near Willows Beach in Oak Bay. It looked to be in very fresh condition. That’s the fourth Painted Lady reported from the Greater Victoria area since September 21. All have been reported as in fresh condition.

Jeremy Tatum sends photographs, both taken on October 3, of two moths new to this site. The first, from his Saanich apartment, is a White-speck Moth Mythimna unipuncta (formerly known as Pseudaletia unipuncta, and, before that, as Leucania unipuncta.) The caterpillar is known to agriculturists as the Army Worm and in some places it apparently occurs in huge numbers and can be destructive to crops. Jeremy writes: I have rarely seen the moth here, and I have yet to find the caterpillar. For a time, he continues, I was sure the second moth, from Swan Lake, was a notodontid – perhaps Schizura or Oligocentria. But it isn’t – it’s a noctuid, which looks very like a notodontid. That big reniform stigma (that’s Latin and Greek for kidney-shaped spot) gives it away as a noctuid.. It is in fact the noctuid Lithomoia germana, the American Brindle. If Schizura imitates a stick, does Lithomoia imitate Schizura imitating a stick? Is it an example of convergent evolution?


White-speck Mythimna unipuncta (Lep.: Noctuidae)
Jeremy Tatum


American Brindle Lithomoia germana (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 October 01

Butterflies may be getting scarce, but there are still lots of other invertebrates to see, such as this slug that Jeremy Tatum photographed at Mount Douglas Beach Park today.


Reticulated Tail-dropper Prophysaon andersonii (Pul.: Anadeniidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

Jeremy Tatum reports a Painted Lady from Iron Mine Bay, September 28. He shows an Apple-and-Thorn Skeletonizer moth, which came from the caterpillar shown on September 18.


Apple-and-Thorn Skeletonizer Choreutis pariana
(Lep.: Choreutidae)
Jeremy Tatum

2014 September 27

The butterfly season is drawing to a close, but there are still a few surprises. Jeremy Tatum reports a Lorquin’s Admiral from Swan Lake, and Ken Vaughan photographed a Painted Lady at Esquimalt Lagoon, both on September 27. There are still a few Cabbage Whites around. Who is going to see the last one?


Painted Lady Vanessa cardui (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Ken Vaughan

Bill Katz sends a picture of a beautiful noctuid moth (new to this site) from Goldstream, and a spectacular coreid bug from Swan Lake.


Agrochola purpurea (Lep.: Noctuidae) Bill Katz


Western Conifer Seed Bug Leptoglossus occidentalis (Hem.: Coreidae)
Bill Katz

Val George sends a couple of photos from Island View Beach, September 25: a Western Black Widow, Latrodectus hesperus (also new to this site) and a Banded Woolly Bear (Isabella Moth) Pyrrharctia isabella.


Western Black Widow Latrodectus hesperus (Ara.: Theridiidae) Val George


Banded Woolly Bear Pyrrharctia isabella (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae) Val George

2014 September 23

Gordon Hart sends photographs from the Highlands of Noctua pronuba and Nepytia phantasmaria. The former is a European invader, which has rapidly become one of our most familiar moths in Victoria. Its caterpillar feeds on many low-growing plants, especially those that you are trying to grow in your garden. The caterpillar of the latter is a conifer-feeder.


Large Yellow Underwing Noctua pronuba (Lep.: Noctuidae) Gordon Hart


Nepytia phantasmaria (Lep.: Geometridae) Gordon Hart

Goldstream Park is very productive for moths at the moment – especially around the Nature House. Bill Katz photographed an interesting caterpillar on September 20. David Wagner identified this one for us as a species of Zale. It is most likely Z. lunata. The brown colour probably indicates that it is shortly going to pupate.


Zale (probably lunata) (Lep.: Erebidae -Erebinae) Bill Katz

Next is Papaipema insulidens, whose caterpillar is a stem-borer in ragwort.


Papaipema insulidens (Lep.: Noctuidae) Bill Katz

Next is a more familiar moth, the day-flying Autographa californica.

 


Autographa californica (Lep.: Noctuidae) Bill Katz

And now Lithophane pertorrida, which is interesting, because it was shown previously on this site on April 3 of this year. This may be a species that overwinters in the adult state and hence can be found is spring and in fall.

Lithophane pertorrida (Lep.: Noctuidae) Bill Katz

 

And Bill got one more interesting moth from Finnerty Gardens at UVic on September 20. Thanks to Libby Avis for identifying it for us as Pleromelloida cinerea.


Pleromelloida cinerea (Lep.: Noctuidae) Bill Katz

Jeremy Tatum writes: Here is a Heliothis phloxiphaga from Gumweed at Island View Beach, and a micro, Oreana unicolorella from willow at Munn Road. The caterpillars of these species are shown on the postings for August 22 and September 18 respectively.


Heliothis phloxiphaga (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum


Oreana unicolorella (Lep.: Pyralidae) Jeremy Tatum

Jeremy Tatum writes that he went to Martindale Road on September 21 to see if there were still any Orange Sulphurs there. He didn’t see any, but it might still be worth trying. He did see a pristine fresh Painted Lady there, next to the same corn square where the sulphurs had been. And Aziza Cooper reports that a Mourning Cloak flew by the VNHS barbecue at the Aylard Farm parking lot on September 20.

 

2014 September 20

Saturday, September 20 to Sunday September 28
EVENT
Victoria Butterfly Count

We are always looking for keen-eyed volunteers to submit butterfly records. If you would like to participate, please contact Aziza Cooper at tanageraz at yahoo.com.

Annie Pang sends a poetogram of Neoalcis californiaria from the Gorge area.


Neoalcis californiaria (Lep.: Geometridae) Annie Pang

Jeremy Tatum sends a photograph of a bug found in his Saanich apartment, September 19, and a caterpillar found on Hardhack at Swan Lake, September 20. He writes that on September 20 he saw a Purplish Copper and several Cabbage Whites on the East Saanich Indian Reserve.

 


Western Conifer Seed Bug Leptoglossus occidentalis (Hem.: Coreidae)
Jeremy Tatum


Rheumaptera undulata (Lep.: Geometridae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 September 18

Libby Avis writes: I found a Cisseps fulvicollis, Yellow-collared Scape Moth, at Little Qualicum Estuary September 15th.

Jeremy Tatum comments. This is one of the most striking of the tribe Lithosiini of moths variously known as scape moths or footman moths. The caterpillars (I have never found one!) feed on lichens.


Yellow-collared Scape Moth Cisseps fulvicollis
(Erebidae – Arctiinae – Lithosiini)
Libby Avis


Yellow-collared Scape Moth Cisseps fulvicollis
(Erebidae – Arctiinae – Lithosiini)
Libby Avis

Jeremy Tatum writes: Here is the moth Lacanobia subjuncta from Beckwith Park in Saanich, September 16. Thanks to Libby for the identification.


Lacanobia subjuncta (Lep.:Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

Guy Monty sends photos of a Catocala. He writes: On the evening of September 14, 2014, there were about two dozen of them fluttering around our porch lights here in Moorecroft Regional Park, Nanoose Bay.

Jeremy Tatum responds: We are not sure what species it is. You’d think a striking species like this would be easy, but Catocala is a large genus with lots of similar-looking species. Discussions have included as possibilities Catocala aholibah, allusa, semirelicta, unijuga. Who knows? For the time being we’d better settle for Catocala sp.

Catocala sp.(Lep.: Erebidae – Erebinae – Catocalini) Guy Monty


Catocala sp.(Lep.: Erebidae – Erebinae – Catocalini) Guy Monty

Jody Wells writes: I saw this remarkable butterfly on my property on West Saanich Road earlier this summer (1st or 2nd August). It was gorgeous blue on the upperside of the wings, and although it flew around landing on this same spot a few times I couldn’t get a shot showing colour. I’m not sure if this is a common species or not. I do not recall ever having seen this large beautiful butterfly in the 35 years I have lived in Greater Victoria.
Jeremy Tatum responds: Glad you mentioned the blue on the upperside, otherwise I would have been stumped. This is Morpho peleides, which occurs in Costa Rica and at the Butterfly Gardens in Central Saanich! Looks as though it had made a break for it.


Morpho peleides (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Jody Wells.

Reid and Susan Gurney write from Fanny Bay in the Comox Valley: Here is a large caterpillar (approx. three inches long by one half inch wide) which we saw on our lawn one week ago. Jeremy Tatum writes: It is the caterpillar of the Polyphemus Moth. Viewers can keep a look out for this spectacular creature just now, when most of them are full grown,


Polyphemus Moth Antheraea polyphemus (Lep.: Saturniidae)
Reid and Susan Gurney

And now for some micros. We are much indebted to Eric LaGasa for identifying them.
First a small moth, several of which have been outside Jeremy Tatum’s Saanich apartment in recent days. It is a European species, Acleris rhombana, apparently known in North America only from British Columbia. Bill Katz photographed one for Invert Alert on October 18, 2013.


Acleris rhombana (Lep.: Tortricidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

Next, two well-marked micro caterpillars. The first was on Salix at Munn Road. It is probably Oreana unicolorella. The second was on Malus at Witty’s Lagoon. It is the Apple-and-Thorn Skeletonizer Choreutis pariana.


Oreana unicolorella (Lep.: Pyralidae) Jeremy Tatum


Choreutis pariana (Lep.: Choreutidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

2014 September 16

There still seem to be a few Pine Whites around, especially in the Sooke/Metchosin area. Jeff Gaskin writes that there was one at Whiffin Spit and one seen along Sooke Road rear Gillespie Road on September 13. Jeremy Tatum saw several on September 14 at Swanwick Road and at Pearson College, Metchosin. Some were high up in the trees; others were nectaring near ground level on thistles and hawkbits.

Val George writes: This morning, Sept 14, a Sulphur butterfly flew in front of my car as I was driving along Oak Bay Ave. Needless to say, I couldn’t identify the species.

Annie Pang sends a photograph of a noctuid moth from the Gorge area, September 12. Thanks to Libby Avis for identifying it as Homorthodes communis.


Homorthodes communis (Lep.: Noctuidae) Annie Pang

Jeremy Tatum sends a photograph of Tetracis jubararia from Bow Park, Saanich, September 15.


Synaxis jubararia (Lep.: Geometridae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 September 13
Libby Avis writes from Port Alberni: Just checked the VNHS site and see you have a post for Neoarctia brucei from Campbell River. We were particularly interested because Rick photographed two of them on Mt Adder, near Sutton Pass, between Ucluelet and Port Alberni, on August 1. Haven’t seen one before, so maybe this is a good year for them.


Neoarctia brucei (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae) Rick Avis

Libby continues: I was wondering if you have any ideas on a couple of caterpillars from earlier in the year. The first one was found in our yard on August 20th and looks as if it might be a Lasiocampidae. The red markings behind the head are similar to Phyllodesma americana, although the other markings are the wrong colour. [Jeremy Tatum comments – I agree. I’m sure it’s Phyllodesma americana, though I’ve never seen one with those markings or colours – apart from the red rings on the thorax, which look typical.]
The second was found on Purple Loosestrife on the Somass Estuary on June 20th. I posted it on Bug Guide and got a suggestion back that it was perhaps an Egira. [Jeremy comments: I think it is a noctuid, and I agree that it is probably an early instar of a species of Egira, perhaps E. crucialis.]


Probably Phyllodesma americana (Lep.: Lasiocampidae) Libby Avis


Perhaps Egira crucialis (Lep.: Noctuidae) Libby Avis

Jeremy Tatum shows a photograph of a Neoalcis californiariafrom his Saanich apartment this morning (September 13), and a pupa of Hyles lineata.


Neoalcis californiaria (Lep.: Geometridae) Jeremy Tatum


White-lined Hawk Moth Hyles lineata (Lep.: Sphingidae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 September 10

Half-a-dozen VNHS members gathered for a butterfly-watching outing on Sunday September 7. This late in the season, expectations were not high, but it was a beautiful warm, sunny and windless day, so we thought we’d give it a try. We had two target species – the Orange Sulphurs that had been at Martindale Road for several days, and an outside chance of a Purplish Copper at Island View Beach. We got them both, including both sexes of the sexually dimorphic Purplish Coppers. In addition we saw a few of the expected Woodland Skippers and Cabbage Whites. Birdwatching and botanizing were, of course, strictly prohibited, and participants were well-behaved except for one understandable diversion for a brief sneak view of a spectacular plant, albeit a foreign weed, at Martindale, namely an Apple of Peru Nicandra physalodes (Solanaceae). A successful and enjoyable outing!

Also on September 7, Aziza Cooper found several Purplish Coppers on the East Saanich Indian reserve, and she took several photographs to illustrate their variability. The Purplish Copper is the most sexually dimorphic of our local butterflies, and the two sexes look almost like different species. Aziza’s first photograph, below, is a male. He is the one who shows a purplish sheen, but only when viewed at certain angles, and only when he is very fresh. Aziza’s second photo is a fresh female. To add to the complications, her third photo shows a rather worn female whose colours have much faded.


Slightly worn male Purplish Copper Lycaena helloides (Lep.: Lycaenidae)
Aziza Cooper


Fresh female Purplish Copper Lycaena helloides (Lep.: Lycaenidae)
Aziza Cooper


Slightly worn female Purplish Copper Lycaena helloides (Lep.: Lycaenidae)
Aziza Cooper

Jeremy Tatum writes: On August 19 I posted an image of a Hypena caterpillar from nettle at Royal Roads University. The moth emerged on September 7 (photo below) – but I still don’t know what species it is. You can see, however, why these moths are called “snout” moths.


Snout moth Hypena sp. (Lep.: Erebidae – Hypeninae) Jeremy Tatum

Here are two colour varieties of the Yellow Woolly Bear (Virginia Ermine). The yellow one was found by Jeremy Tatum at King’s Pond, and the brown one by Jeff Gaskin and Barb McGrenere at McIntyre reservoir.

 


Yellow Woolly Bear Spilosoma virginica (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae)
Jeremy Tatum


Yellow Woolly Bear Spilosoma virginica (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae)
Barb McGrenere

 

And here is a caterpillar of Cucullia montanae from Grindelia at Island View Beach.


Cucullia montanae (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

2014 September 7

Mike and Barb McGrenere report that an Orange Sulphur flew over Tsehum Harbour on September 4. Val George and Jeremy Tatum saw several still at the Martindale location (see August 25 posting) on September 6. Here is Val’s photo of one of the Orange Sulphurs. It may be of interest to compare the markings on the undersides of the hindwings of this and other recent photos (Aziza’s of August 25, and Wendy’s of August 22) with what the books say they ought to be, and to decide whether these markings are useful (or otherwise!) in species identification.


Orange Sulphur Colias eurytheme (Lep.: Pieridae) Val George

Yellow Woolly Bears are much in evidence just now. Val found one on September 6 near the Orange Sulphur location, and Jeremy found one at King’s Pond the previous day.

Leo Dönnecke found a nice moth on Crest Mountain near Campbell River on August 31.  It is Bruce’s Tiger Moth – a moth of mountainous alpine meadows in western North America.  His dad Daniel managed to get a photograph.


Bruce’s Tiger Moth Neoarctia brucei (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae) Daniel Dönnecke

 

Although the next photo is a few weeks old, I thought it was worth including, because it shows what is apparently an unusual foodplant for Hyles lineata. The usual foodplant is Epilobium, but this one is on quite unrelated Abronia. It is not a final instar, so it is not a case of a fully-fed caterpillar wandering off its foodplant to find somewhere to pupate, and it looks likely (though we can’t be absolutely certain) that it was using Abronia as a foodplant. The photograph was obtained by Morgan Davies on Sidney Island, where the species is apparently not uncommon, on July 2.


Hyles lineata (Lep.: Sphingidae) Morgan Davies

Bill Katz sends recent photos of two moths from his productive garage on Summit Hill.
I’m putting “probably” before the labels. I am pretty sure that they are correct, but I cannot be 100 percent certain. Opinions welcome!


Probably Acleris fragariana (Lep.: Tortricidae)
Bill Katz


Probably Epirrita autumnata (Lep.: Geometridae) Bill Katz

2014 September 5

In spite of the record-breaking rainfall the other day, there were still a few Orange Sulphurs at Martindale Road on September 4. See August 25 posting for details of the exact location.

Butterflies may be winding down for the season, but there are still lots of other insects around, especially grasshoppers of several species. Here is a photo of a Two-striped Grasshopper, photographed by Aziza Cooper from Uplands Park, August 28, and kindly identified for us by Claudia Copley.


Two-striped Grasshopper Melanoplus bivittatus (Orth.: Acrididae) Aziza Cooper

On September 1 Jeremy Tatum saw a Purplish Copper at McIntyre reservoir. Also at McIntyre reservoir he saw his first Isabella caterpillar (Banded Woolly Bear) of the fall. October is their best month, but this one must have been taking an early stroll.

Yellow Woolly Bears seem to be making themselves conspicuous just now. Here is a photo of one by Val George, Puckle Road, Central Saanich, September 1.


Yellow Woolly Bear (Virginia Ermine) Spilosoma virginica (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae)
Val George

Another woolly bear that is conspicuous at the time of year is the Spotted Tiger Moth. Here is a photo of one taken by Natalie Skinner in Gordon Head.


Spotted Tiger Moth Lophocampa maculata (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae) Natalie Skinner

 

Bill Katz writes: Eva and I were at Goldstream on September 1 and we found an abundance of moths at the Nature House. These are Ipimorpha nanaimo, Lithophane innominata and Lambdina fiscellaria (Hemlock Looper).


Ipimorpha nanaimo (Lep.: Noctuidae) Bill Katz


Lithophane innominata (Lep.: Noctuidae) Bill Katz


Lambdina fiscellaria (Lep.: Geometridae) Bill Katz

 

Morgan Davies sends a photograph of a moth seen on Sidney Island Spit on June 16. I’m not 100 percent sure, but I believe it is Euxoa auxiliaris. (Jeremy Tatum)


Maybe Euxoa auxiliaris (Lep.: Noctuidae) Morgan Davies

2014 September 1

 Gordon Hart sends a picture of the caterpillar of Acronicta dactylina, August 29. This is one of a large genus of moths that look very similar in the adult stage, but the caterpillars are both spectacular and varied. The adult moths carry a dagger-like marking on their forewing, which is obvious in some species, and less obvious in others. The genus on the whole are known as “dagger” moths. Although many of them, like dactylina, are furry, they are not at all related to the “woolly bear” caterpillars.


Acronicta dactylina (Lep.: Noctuidae) Gordon Hart

Annie Pang sends recent photos of a variety of insects. If someone can identify the grasshopper, please let us know. The fly might be Lucilia sp. (greenbottle). The stage of development of the maggots of some species enable forensic scientists to determine how long a body has been dead. Some doctors use the maggots for treating infected tissue in injured patients. Apparently it is often quite successful. Some species lay their eggs in the nostrils of frogs and toads – but I don’t think anyone will want to know what happens next. The Leafcutter Bee can be recognized in that it gathers pollen on the underside of its abdomen rather than on its legs like a Honey Bee.


Grasshopper (Orth.: Acrididae) Annie Pang


Blow Fly, possibly Lucilia sp. (Dip.: Calliphoridae) Annie Pang


Leafcutter Bee Megachile sp. (Hym.: Megachilidae) Annie Pang

Bill Katz sends a photo of a caddisfly from Goldstream Park, and the moth Xanthorhoe defensaria from the Interfaith Chapel at Finnerty Gardens.


Caddisfly (Trichoptera) Bill Katz


Xanthorhoe defensaria (Lep.: Geometridae) Bill Katz

Mike McGrenere writes: I was cycling in the Martindale/Island View area today (Aug 29) and was able to see two Sulphur butterflies. The first was along Welch Road north of Martindale Road where there is a corn field. Gerry Ansell had two there a while ago and there was still one there today along with Cabbage Whites. The butterflies like the flowering plants along the edge of the corn field.

The second one was in a new location. It was along the west side of McIntyre Reservoir. The butterfly flew out of the weedy onion field as I was walking along the farm road and it disappeared into the dry grass/weeds on the edge of the reservoir. I am assuming that this was an Orange Sulphur like the others in this general area but I did not get any field marks except for the yellow colour and erratic flight. The number of Cabbage Whites was down considerably from last week with only two along the reservoir. I saw two other butterflies which I think were a Purplish Copper and a Mylitta Crescent.

Jeremy Tatum writes that on August 30 between Island View Beach and Cordova Spit he saw several Purplish Coppers, Large Heaths (regular viewers of this site will know that I am referring to the so-called “ringlet”) and Woodland Skippers. The Purplish Coppers, male and female, were looking pristine fresh, while the Large Heaths were, shall we say, somewhat past the first fresh flush of youth.

Here are two colour varieties of the Spotted Tiger Moth caterpillar (Ken Strothcamp would welcome all photos of this species), and what I think is the final instar of the White-lined Hawk Moth caterpillar, earlier instars of which we have seen on August 25 and 29. It truly is a most spectacular animal. It is about the size of my middle finger.

June – July 2014

2014 July 30

Some of us are noticing how very scarce butterflies of any sort are flying just now. Even Tiger Swallowtails, Lorquin’s Admirals and Pine Whites seem to be scarce. The best bet for butterflies is to look at the very summits of some of our local hills after six in the evening to see Painted Ladies. But have a look at the July 14 entry for further suggestions. There are several species of butterfly that have not been mentioned in this year’s Alerts – but you have to go out into the countryside to find them.

Annie Pang sends photographs of Cosmia praeacuta from the Gorge/Tillicum area, July 19.


Cosmia praeacuta (Lep.: Noctuidae) Annie Pang


Cosmia praeacuta (Lep.: Noctuidae) Annie Pang

Jeff Gaskin writes: On Sunday July 27, around 6 pm. there were an Anise Swallowtail, a Red Admiral, and 2 Painted Ladies on or flying around the cement reservoir on Mt. Tolmie – to which Jeremy Tatum adds: There were also Painted Ladies on the top of Christmas Hill at the same time.

Val George writes: Here is my butterfly list for the official July count done for Mt Douglas and the surrounding area; I did the count July 27.

Anise Swallowtail 2 (summit), Cabbage White 11, Lorquin’s Admiral 1, Painted Lady 4 (summit), Pine White 8, Western Tiger Swallowtail 6, Woodland Skipper 1.

Val also attaches a photo of a female Blue Dasher (Pachydiplax longipennis) taken on July 25 behind the Red Barn Market on West Saanich Rd.


Female Blue Dasher Pachydiplax longipennis (Odo.: Libellulidae) Val George

 

Jeremy Tatum writes that the Satyr Comma caterpillar shown on July 26 pupated on July 28 and made a nice chrysalis:


Satyr Comma Polygonia satyrus (Lep. Nymphalidae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 July 26

Identification Problems
Colias, Polygonia, Yponomeuta
Jeremy Tatum

Colias, the sulphur butterflies. Pristine fresh males might be easy if one sees both upper and undersides. Unfortunately, sulphurs almost always settle and rest with their wings closed, so we don’t often get a good prolonged look at the uppersides. Females of several of the Colias species have an occasional-to-common white form, and white females are perhaps the most difficult forms to identify. I believe that Aziza Cooper’s July 21 butterfly (see July 22 posting) is a white female, so we have a problem!

The plausible possibilities in our area are

Western Sulphur C. occidentalis
Clouded Sulphur C. philodice
Orange Sulphur C. eurytheme

I hope I’m not too hasty, but I don’t think Aziza’s butterfly is occidentalis,so we are left with the other two. I cannot say that I am certain which of the two it is. In most pictures that I have seen of the two species, the hindwing underside of those labelled (rightly or wrongly!) as eurytheme has a fairly conspicuous row of submarginal spots. These spots are much less bold in pictures that are supposed to be philodice. Such spots are almost completely absent in Aziza’s photo. Based on this I’d agree with Aziza that her butterfly is more likely to be philodice, the Clouded Sulphur. We should be on the look-out for more of these butterflies. If you can see conspicuous orange on a male upperside, it’ll be Eurytheme.

 

Polygonia, the commas (formerly anglewings). I find these very difficult, and Val George has set us a problem with his July 13 upper and underside (see July 17 posting).

The plausible possibilities in our area are

Satyr Comma P. satyrus
Green Comma P. faunus
Grey Comma P. progne
Oreas Comma P. oreas
Hoary Comma P. gracilis
“Zephyr” Comma P. zephyrus

Val’s photos are certainly not satyrus or faunus, while progne has never been recorded anywhere near Vancouver Island.

Not everyone regards “zephyrus” as a separate species, and on this site I am regarding the “Zephyr” Comma as a subspecies (the one that is supposed to occur on Vancouver Island) of the Hoary Comma, and I call it P. gracilis zephyrus. The problem of comma identification is already hard enough without trying to deal with subspecies, so, for Val’s butterfly, we have to decide between P. oreas and P. gracilis. I’m not sure myself, and I’d like to see to two species side by side.  Val is leaning towards gracilis.  We’d welcome comments.

 

Yponomeuta, the small ermine moths. The adults of the species Y. malinellus and Y. padella are similar. Whether they are distinguishable other than by dissection I am not yet sure. I’ll try to rear some next year. Eric LaGasa, Washington micro expert, agrees with my suggestion that larvae feeding on Malus are likely to be malinellus, while larvae feeding on Crataegus are likely to be padella. Also the cocoons are distinct. The cocoon of malinellus is dense, white and opaque, whereas that of padella is a flimsy net-like structure. I labelled most examples that appeared earlier on this site as malinellus. However, the foodplant of some of them was known to be Crataegus, so when I get round to it (perhaps not too far in the future) I should re-label these as padella.

 

Annie Pang writes: I got this picture on July 21st at Gorge Park. I saw the wasp drop to the ground carrying this spider which I had identified as possibly a Misumena vatia although it would be hard to tell with this wasp eating it!

Jeremy Tatum comments: There is a family of wasps, Pompilidae, that specializes in hunting spiders, but this is not one of them. It is a vespid, Polistes sp. Interesting. I agree with Annie that the spider may well be Misumena vatia, but it is probably not safe to label it as such.


Paper wasp Polistes sp. (Hym.: Vespidae) with spider. Annie Pang

Jeremy Tatum writes: Here is an unusually white form of the caterpillar of a Satyr Comma from Lochside Drive north of Blenkinsop Lake, July 24.


Satyr Comma Polygonia satyrus (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

Jeremy Tatum writes: On July 25 there were a Painted Lady and a Red Admiral on the Mount Tolmie reservoir. It is best to go after about 6:00 pm to see these late-afternoon hill-topping nymphalids.

Jeff Gaskin writes: On July 17, Nairn Hollett tells me that Government House had the following butterflies: 1 Red Admiral, 1 Painted Lady, 4 Western Tiger Swallowtails, and 2 Lorquin’s Admirals. Today in Beacon Hill Park on July 22, in the southern woods the best I could come up with was 1 Western Tiger Swallowtail.

Jeremy Tatum writes: Viewers may have seen a bold headline in the July 23 Times-Colonist: Burrowing Caterpillars Scar Lilacs. The species concerned is Gracillaria syringella (Lep.: Gracillariidae), also known as Caloptilia syringella. A close-up of an adult, photographed by Terry Thormin, appeared on this site on 2010 May 17.

Libby Avis writes from Alberni: Got Anarta (formerly Dicestra) farnhami on July 19th; it’s the first time I’ve seen it here. Also Melanchra adjuncta on July 17th. Have only seen it once before and that was in 2008.


Anarta farnhami (Lep.: Noctuidae) Libby Avis


Melanchra adjuncta (Lep.: Noctuidae) Libby Avis

 

Morgan Davies sends a photo of Apamea amputatrix from a light trap on Sidney Island, July 2.


Apamea amputatrix (Lep.: Noctuidae) Morgan Davies

2014 July 22

Colias alert! Aziza Cooper reports two or three sulphur butterflies at Panama Flats on July 21. She photographed one of them – below. Not 100 percent sure of the exact species yet, but we’ll post as soon as we know for sure. In the meantime, I thought I ought not to delay in posting the sighting. The one below is nectaring at bindweed. It may also be attracted to clovers, melilot and lucerne.


Sulphur Colias sp. (Lep.: Pieridae) Aziza Cooper

The Monarch that was at Panama Flats on Sunday, July 20, hasn’t been seen again – but keep a look-out and let us know.

Annie Pang sends photos of two nice moths from her home in the Gorge/Tillicum area, July 7.


Lesser Yellow Underwing Noctua comes (Lep.: Noctuidae) Annie Pang


Lesser Yellow Underwing Noctua comes (Lep.: Noctuidae) Annie Pang


Girdler Moth Dargida procinctus (Lep.: Noctuidae) Annie Pang

Jeremy Tatum writes: The moth below is a very tiny moth, and I couldn’t get it as sharp as I would have liked. Viewers will have often noticed a swollen gall at the base of the midrib of the leaves of Rhamnus purshiana. This is caused by the caterpillar of a moth of the family Cosmopterygidae, Sorhagenia nimbosa.


Sorhagenia nimbosa (Lep.: Cosmopterygidae) Jeremy Tatum

Jeff Gaskin writes: In Cuthbert Holmes Park today, July 21, there were 11 Lorquin’s Admirals, 3 Pine Whites and 1 Woodland Skipper. Western Tiger Swallowtails seem to be petering out – there was one on the 500 block of Gorge road West today, and only one in Gorge Park on Saturday July the 19th. In Cecilia Ravine were just 2 Lorquin’s Admirals, 1 Woodland Skipper, and 8 Cabbage Whites.

2014 July 20

Monarch!!! Jeremy Tatum saw one, pristine fresh, at Panama Flats today. Honest!
No kidding! Has anyone else seen one? Please do let us know.

Jeff Gaskin writes: This morning, July 17th, there was a Woodland Skipper on lavender in a playground at the end of Cecilia Avenue, just to the north of Cecilia Ravine in the Burnside-Gorge Community.

Bill Katz sends a photo of a small ermine moth of the genus Yponomeuta, from Summit Hill. The exact species is a bit difficult to determine, but this one looks more like Y. malinellus, whose caterpillar feeds on apple (including crab-apple) leaves.


Yponomeuta malinellus (Lep.: Yponomeutidae) Bill Katz

Jeremy Tatum writes: Visitors to Panama Flats will notice a strikingly striped leaf beetle on the Beggarticks, a.k.a Bur Marigold, a.k.a. Bidens. This is Calligrapha californica. I managed to photograph one of them on July 20.


Calligrapha californica (Col.: Chrysomelidae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 July 17

Jeff Gaskin reports that the Tuesday Group saw at least 6 Pine Whites at Witty’s Lagoon on July 15, at about the same time that Jeremy Tatum saw his first at UVic, where there are now lots of them. Jeff also noted them around Calvert Park and Hector Road the following day.

Still lots of Painted Ladies in the evenings on the reservoir or near the Jeffery Pine on Mount Tolmie. Most are rather worn, but one on July 16 was pristine fresh.

Val George reports a Hudsonian Whiteface from San Juan Ridge (near Jordan River), July 13. Also from there a comma believed to be a Hoary Comma. (Jeremy Tatum comments: I still don’t know how to tell the difference between a Hoary Comma and an Oreas Comma. If anyone has any comments on the butterfly in Val’s photos, do let us know.)


Hudsonian Whiteface Leucorrhinia hudsonica (Odo.: Libellulidae) Val George


Hoary Comma Polygonia gracilis (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Val George


Hoary Comma Polygonia gracilis (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Val George

There are some butterflies to look out for that we haven’t yet had on this site this year.
Great Arctic, Common Wood Nymph, Hydaspe Fritillary, Margined White, Dun Skipper.

Great Arctic. This is an even year, so this is when they are supposed to be around. Dates when they have been previously reported to this site are July 5 and 10, 2012, and July 9, 2013 (an odd year!). This, therefore, is the time of year. I went up Mount Wells
(for probably the last time!) on July 15, but I drew blank. I got there at 8:00 am, hoping to beat the heat, but it was dangerously hot even at that time in the morning. The only butterflies I saw there were a few Woodland Skippers.

Common Wood Nymph. You might try the DND grounds near the RPBO – but you’ll need permission. Or the railway line north of Chemainus. A long shot – the DAO.

Hydaspe Fritillary. Perhaps way along the hydro line by Spectacle Lake.

Margined White – maybe the railway line north of Malahat station, or Bright Angel Park.

Dun Skipper. You could try the Kinsol trestle.

2014 July 14

Saturday, July 19
FIELD TRIP (LEVEL 3)
Dragonflies in the Wild
Last summer, entomologist Gord Hutchings took us out to the ponds at Elk/Beaver Lake and we enjoyed close-up looks at many of the dragonfly wonders that live here. This year we will head out to the wilds for an all-day outing. We shall also check out birds as we travel through the forest. Consider this a Dragonfly and Bird Extravaganza! Our planned location will probably be around the Nanaimo Lakes area but the final destination will be chosen closer to the date. Ideally we will be near a pond, a river and a lake to get the most diversity of species, birds and dragonflies. Gord has seen some rather uncommon dragonflies in that rich area. The success of this field trip depends on its being a sunny day as they are only active when it is nice out. We will be in some very rough terrain around the edges of waterways, so you might wish to bring your gumboots, and a hiking stick might be good as well. Bring a lunch for the all-day outing. We will probably meet at 7:00 a.m. at Helmcken Park & Ride to carpool. Contact Agnes at thelynns@shaw.ca or 250-721-0634 to register or for more information.

Saturday, July 19 to Sunday, July 27
VICTORIA BUTTERFLY COUNT
We are always looking for keen-eyed volunteers to submit butterfly records. If you would like to participate, please contact Aziza Cooper at tanageraz@yahoo.com.

Jeremy Tatum writes: At this time of year, butterflies are mostly Western Tiger Swallowtails and Lorquin’s Admirals. However in the late afternoon (say about 6 o’clock) nymphalids are hill-topping. Thus in the last few days (written on July 14) Painted Ladies have been seen at the tops of Mount Tolmie, Christmas Hill and Highrock Park. Doubtless they are to be found at the tops of other hills, too, as well as possibly some other butterflies. On July 13 I saw a Mourning Cloak at Rithet’s Bog.

Jeff Gaskin writes: This morning, Sat. July 12, there was a Painted Lady on a buddleia bush along with swallowtails, and a Lorquin’s Admiral at 410 Gorge Road West. Nearby but down a block on Gorge Road was a Pale Tiger Swallowtail.

Bill Katz adds a new moth to this site with a photo of Plemyra georgii from Goldstream Park on July 13. Jeremy Tatum photographed another Enargia infumata at his Saanich apartment on July 14. Not sure whether the slightly different coluur of this moth from the July 3 one is a real colour difference between the moths, or part of the vagaries of digital photography.


Plemyra georgii (Lep.: Geometridae) Bill Katz


Enargia infumata (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 July 10

Val George reports 2 Painted Ladies and a Red Admiral on the reservoir at the summit of Mt Tolmie on July 8 (photos attached).


Painted Lady Vanessa cardui (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Val George


Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Val George

Jeff Gaskin reports 4 Painted Ladies, 1 Pale Tiger Swallowtail, several Western Tiger Swallowtails and lots of Lorquin’s Admirals on Mount Tolmie on July 7.

Jeremy Tatum writes: I saw an Anise Swallowtail at Island View Beach on July 6. In the days when this was still a common butterfly, the caterpillars at IVB used to feed on Lomatium and Glehnia.

Every morning now there are several Common Emerald moths outside my apartment. On July 7 they were joined there by a Eulithis xylina.


Eulithis xylina (Lep.: Geometridae) Jeremy Tatum

Jochen Moehr sends a photo of a very strange creature from Metchosin. It is a clearwing moth of the family Sesiidae. Claudia Copley suggested that it is Synanthedon novaroensis, and, after further study, I’m almost certain that that is what it is. The larva apparently feeds in the cambium layer of various pines and Douglas Fir. Its presence can be detected by a mass of mixed pitch and frass on the tree trunk. A most interesting find.


Synanthedon novaroensis (Lep.: Sesiidae) Jochen Moehr

Jeremy Tatum found a third-instar Polyphemus caterpillar on Cornus stolonifera in Lochside Drive north of Blenkinsop Lake on July 8. There was also a Satyr Comma nearby.


Polyphemus Moth Antheraea polyphemus (Lep.: Saturniidae) Jeremy Tatum

2014 July 6

Colias alert! Jeff Gaskin writes: Today around 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 6, there was a sulphur butterfly flying low along Logan Avenue and heading towards Harriet Road which is in the Gorge/Burnside Road community.

Jeremy Tatum responds: Sulphurs are rare visitors to the Victoria area, and we cannot be sure which species this was. Butterfly enthusiasts are asked to look out for sulphurs, in the Gorge area or anywhere else and let us know if they see any, and see if they can identify the species. (Don’t ask me how – I dunno!)

Bill Katz sends a photo of Eulithis xylina from his Summit Hill garage. Moths of this genus are known as “phoenix” moths.


Eulithis xylina (Lep.: Geometridae) Bill Katz

It was totally cloudy at the top of Mount Tolmie when a few butterfly enthusiasts gathered there on the morning of July 6, and no butterflies turned up then. However, by 6:00 in the evening it was warm and sunny and the local nymphalids were hill-topping. There was several Lorquin’s Admirals and Painted Ladies (some of the latter quite worn but still flying strongly) and at least one Red Admiral, near the entrance to the reservoir.

Jeremy Tatum writes: I usually assume that any comma seen at UVic is, by default, a Satyr Comma, so I was surprised on Saturday (July 5) to find a chrysalis of the Green Comma on a willow there.


Green Comma Polygonia faunus (Lep.: Nymphalidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

 

2014 July 3

Sunday, July 6
FIELD TRIP (LEVEL 2)
Monthly Butterfly Outing

Join Aziza Cooper on the first of a series of Butterfly outings. She hopes to get out on the first Sunday in each month to search for butterflies. Each outing is intended to help us learn more about our local butterflies. This outing is weather dependent. It needs to be warm and sunny to make it worthwhile. We will meet near the top of Mount Tolmie (off Cedar Hill Cross Road) and decide where to go from there. Meet at 10:00 a.m. at the main parking lot just north of the summit. Contact Aziza at 250-516-7703 or email Agnes at thelynns at shaw.ca for more information. (I believe that Rick Schortinghuis will be leading this trip.)

Val George was on Mount Douglas on June 25, doing the monthly Butterfly Count, and he scored: 22 Western Tiger Swallowtails, 3 Pale Swallowtails, 1 Anise Swallowtail (summit), 15 Cabbage Whites, 5 Painted Ladies (summit), 1 Propertius Duskywing (summit), 1 Mourning Cloak, 5 Lorquin’s Admirals, c50 European (Essex) Skippers.

Jeremy Tatum photographed a moth, Enargia infumata at his Saanich apartment on July 1. The caterpillar feeds on the leaves of cottonwood. He writes: There seem to be lots of Common Emerald moths Hemithea aestivaria everywhere just now. Although there were very few Malacosoma caterpillars this spring, there was an adult M. californicum outside my apartment this morning (July 3). Satyr Commas, both adults and caterpillars, are to be found just now along Lochside Drive north of Blenkinsop Lake.


Enargia infumata (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

Ken Vaughan sends bunch of photos of a variety of insects.


Sabulodes edwardsata (Lep.: Geometridae) Ken Vaughan


Western Tiger Swallowtail Papilio rutulus (Lep.: Papilionidae) Ken Vaughan


Ellychnia hatchi (Col.: Lampyridae) Ken Vaughan


Male Eight-spotted Skimmer Libellula forensis (Odo.: Libellulidae) Ken Vaughan


Male Western Pondhawk Erythemis collocata (Odo.: Libellulidae) Ken Vaughan

 

2014 June 30

Jeremy Tatum writes: I am now back from holidays in England. Sorry for the long gap in the Invert Alerts. I had some fancy notion that I might somehow be able to continue to operate it from England, but that proved to be beyond my limited computer abilities. We should be back in business now, so keep your reports and pictures coming in.

I saw lots of butterflies in England, and I thank Sussex butterfly enthusiast David Harris for taking me out to show me so many of them on the South Downs.

One of the butterflies I saw was the genuine Ringlet butterfly – named for the conspicuous “ringlet” marks on the undersides of its wings. The Ringlet is not at all like our local butterfly that we illogically call the (Adjective) “Ringlet”. Our butterfly is really a local population of the widespread Holarctic Large Heath Coenonympha tullia. This species unsurprisingly varies quite a lot over its wide range, and many of these minor varieties have received separate specific names from overenthusiastic taxonomists. Our Vancouver Island population is distinguished by having no trace of a “ringlet” mark at all! The immature stages are indistinguishable from those of the European populations.

I made a mistake in the June 10 posting, dismissing a noctuid moth photographed by Aziza Cooper as a mere “micro”, probably a crambid. I apologize to Aziza and most particularly to the moth for this mistake. Libby Avis has identified it for us as a noctuid, Protodeltotes albildula. I have corrected the text and caption in the June 10 posting.

During the past two weeks while I was away I received a few reports, as follows.

June 11. Jeff Gaskin. Painted Ladies on Christmas Hill.
June 14. Ian Cruickshank. A Ceanothus Silk Moth at East Sooke Park.
June 15. Julie Michaux. A Large Yellow Underwing in her Saanich Garden.
June 17. Jeff Gaskin. Seven or more Pale Tiger Swallowtails along Stebbings Road,
Shawnigan Lake area, as well as a few late Western Spring Azures.
Also, a Mourning Cloak at Providence Farm, Duncan.
June 21. Bill Katz sent photos from Finnerty Gardens and Summit Hill of the moths
Spilosoma virginica, Eurrhypara hortulata, Idaea dimidiata and Udea profundalis. The first two are shown below.
June 21. Jeff Gaskin. Cuthbert Homes Park. 20 Essex Skippers, 13 Lorquin’s
Admirals, 1 Western Spring Azure, 1 Mourning Cloak.
June 22 Sandra Raftery. Michell Nursery, Lochside Drive. White-lined Hawk Moth.
June 23 Bill Katz. Moths at Summit Hill Callizzia amorata, Hedya nubiferana, Notocelia sp.
June 25 Jeff Gaskin. Panama Flats (not including Panama Hill), 213 Essex Skippers.
Colquitz River Park, 10 Western Tiger Swallowtails and 15 Lorquin’s Admirals.
June 30 Jeremy Tatum. Mount Tolmie, near the Jeffery Pine, a Painted Lady.

 


Spilosoma virginica (Lep.:Erebidae – Arctiinae) Bill Katz


Small Magpie Moth Eurrhypara hortulata (Lep.: Crambidae) Bill Katz


White-lined Hawk Moth Hyles lineata (Lep.: Sphingidae) Sandra Raftery

 


Large Yellow Underwing Noctua pronuba (Lep.:Noctuidae) Julie Michaux

 

 

2014 June 10

A reminder – Jeremy Tatum will be away on holiday from now to the end of the month, so the Invertebrate Alert site service will be somewhere between spotty and nonexistent during that period. (See June 8 posting.) If I find a computer while I’m away, I may be able to do something. Otherwise, save your reports of sightings and photos. In the meantime, here are two notices from the VNHS calendar to keep you busy. Note that it is very probable that you will find some butterflies in Duncan that you won’t find in Victoria.

Sunday, June 15
Field Trip (LEVEL 2/3)
Duncan Butterflies

Join us on our search for the amazing array of butterflies in this area. This trip is weather dependent. It needs to be sunny to make it worthwhile. Meet at 9:00 a.m. at Helmcken Park and Ride to car-pool or at 10:00 a.m. at the entrance to the boardwalk at Somenos Marsh in Duncan (off the highway north of Beverly). Contact Rick at 250-885-2454 if the weather is doubtful or for more information.

Saturday, June 21 to Sunday, June 29
VICTORIA BUTTERFLY COUNT
We are always looking for keen-eyed volunteers to submit butterfly records. If you would like to participate, please contact Aziza Cooper at tanageraz@yahoo.com.

 

Aziza Cooper writes: Today (June 8) I counted 62 Vancouver Island Ringlets at the Quick’s Bottom site on the trail between Markham Road and Wilkinson Road. Several times 5 or more were in the air at once. Three more ringlets flushed out of the grassy field north of Layritz Park. Another ringlet was on private property in another field south of Quick’s Bottom. It looks like they’re having a very good year. The only other butterfly I saw today was a Lorquin’s Admiral. I’ve attached a photo of a moth I found in the grass at the field north of Layritz Park.

Jeff Gaskin also noted the ringlets at Layritz Park on June 9, but missed them at Quick’s! Evidently you have to be there at the right time!

Jeremy Tatum comments. This is really good news about these butterflies. What to call them is a bit of a problem, since they have been subject to so much taxonomic revision and name-changing over the years. I take the conservative view and I call all the populations of this very wide-ranging butterfly Coenonympha tullia, and the English name Large Heath. Regardless, it is very good news to hear about this healthy population at Quick’s Bottom. Libby Avis has kindly identified Aziza’s moth as Protodeltote albidula.  She writes: They typically come to rest upside down on a stalk of grass – just like Aziza’s photo


Protodeltote albidula (Lep.: Noctuidae) Aziza Cooper

Jeremy continues: I visited Quick’s Bottom on June 9 and I saw a few tullia there, as well as three Mourning Cloaks. The Reed Canary Grass there is at least as high as an elephant’s eye, and very hard for a hay-fever sufferer. In fact the grass is so high there that I couldn’t reach the birdwatching platform at Quick’s. I saw a couple of nice moth caterpillars, both on rose flowers – Common Emerald Hemithea aestivaria, and Vapourer Moth Orgyia antiqua. At Rithet’s Bog I saw a late Western Spring Azure.
On June 10 I found a caterpillar (shown below) of Behrensia conchiformis on Snowberry at Mount Tolmie.


Behrensia conchiformis (Lep.:Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum

 

2014 June 8

Jeremy Tatum writes: I am going on holiday on Wednesday. Back at the end of June. I may occasionally (or may not at all) have access to a computer, and may occasionally (or may not) be able to run the Invert Alert during this period. If you submit any contributions during this period, you may have to wait a while before they are posted. It may be best to save your photos and sightings until I get back.
I look forward to seeing them.

Libby Avis sends photos of Sphinx perelegans from her porch light at Port Alberni, June 7. Also on June 7, a Euclidia ardita from Mount Arrowsmith.


Sphinx perelegans (Lep.:Sphingidae) Libby Avis


Sphinx perelegans (Lep.:Sphingidae) Libby Avis


Sphinx perelegans (Lep.:Sphingidae) Libby Avis


Euclidia ardita (Lep.:Erebidae) Rick Avis

Jeremy Tatum writes: Western and Pale Tiger Swallowtails and Lorquin’s Admirals are now (June 7) being seen generally. Mourning Cloaks are still around – e.g. two on Mount Tolmie and one at Blenkinsop Lake. There were two Satyr Commas, one of which landed on me, at Bow Park. Also at Bow Park I found a congregation of dozens of Mourning Cloak caterpillars on a willow. (They are highly gregarious.) I took one home briefly to photograph it, and then took it back to join its fellows.


Mourning Cloak Nymphalis antiopa (Lep.:Nymphalidae)
Jeremy Tatum

Val George writes: Butterflies at the top of Mt Douglas this afternoon, June 5: 2 Anise Swallowtails (photo), 2 Western Tiger Swallowtails, 1 Lorquin’s Admiral, 2 Propertius Duskywings, 3 Western Spring Azures, 1 Painted Lady.


Anise Swallowtail Papilio zelicaon (Lep.:Papilionidae) Val George

Ken Vaughan sends a few pics from Swan Lake, June 6.


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


Painted Lady Vanessa cardui (Lep.:Nymphalidae) Ken Vaughan


Blue Dasher Pachydiplax longipennis (Odo.:Libellulidae) Ken Vaughan


Blue Dasher Pachydiplax longipennis (Odo.:Libellulidae) Ken Vaughan

 

Libby Avis sends a “mystery caterpillar” from Alberni on June 4. Any ideas, anyone?


Mystery caterpillar Libby Avis

Jeff Gaskin reports a Cedar Hairstreak from Joan Crescent on June 4, while Bruce Whittington saw several in his Ladysmith garden on June 2. Jeff reports Lorquin’s Admirals and Western Tiger Swallowtails from Esquimalt Gorge and Gorge Parks on June 5.
Looks as though Bill Katz has been exploring the genus Xanthorhoe. His X. packardata was at Finnerty Gardens, and his X. defensaria at Goldstream Park, June 3.


Xanthorhoe packardata (Lep.:Geometridae) Bill Katz


Xanthorhoe defensaria (Lep.:Geometridae) Bill Katz

Bill also sends a photo of a Rough Prominent from his Summit Hill garage:


Rough Prominent Nadata gibbosa (Lep.:Notodontidae) Bill Katz

2014 June 3

Jeremy Tatum writes that there were lots of butterflies (seven species) on or near the reservoir or the Jeffrey Pine on Mount Tolmie at 4:00 pm on the afternoon of June 2 – Western and Pale Tiger Swallowtails, Painted Ladies, Mourning Cloak, Lorquin’s Admiral, Propertius Duskywing, Western Spring Azure. Also on Mount Tolmie now you can find young (2nd or 3rd instar caterpillars of the woodling moth Egira crucialis in the panicles of Ocean Spray.

Rosemary Jorna writes: I saw this Cedar Hairstreak on Ayum Rd during the Sooke Symphomy Secret Garden Tour, June 1. Late in the afternoon on Tugwell Rd , Otter Point, I saw my first Lorquin’s Admiral for the year but could not get a good photo.


Cedar Hairstreak Mitoura rosneri (Lep.:Lycaenidae) Rosemary Jorna

Jeremy Tatum sends pictures of a Common Emerald moth, and a chrysalis of Lorquin’s Admiral, from Mount Tolmie, June 3.


Common Emerald Hemithea aestivaria (Lep.:Geometridae) Jeremy Tatum


Lorquin’s Admiral Limenitis lorquini (Lep.:Nymphalidae
Jeremy Tatum

2104 June 01

Jeremy Tatum reports that on May 30-31 there were Mourning Cloak, Painted Lady, Western Tiger Swallowtail, Propertius Duskywing on the Mount Tolmie reservoir. He also saw single Mourning Cloaks on May 3 at Maber Flats and at UVic. Also at UVic on May 31 a Satyr Comma and a Lorquin’s Admiral, and on June 1 there a latish Western Spring Azure. Caterpillars of Satyr Comma can now be found on Stinging Nettle at Lochside Drive north of Blenkinsop Lake, and at Swan Lake. Caterpillars of Essex (European) Skipper can now be found on Reed Canary Grass at Panama Flats.

Bill Katz photographed a Lorquin’s Admiral At Finnerty Gardens, UVic, June 1.


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

Is anyone seeing any Malacosoma caterpillars this year? I have seen exactly one californicum and one disstria this year. Is anyone else seeing them? Sharon Godkin sent a photo of a big bunch of californicum from Powell River on the Mainland, but they seem to be almost absent from the southern part of Vancouver Island.
Rosemary Jorna sends a bunch of butterfly and damselfly photos from the Otter Point area. She also writes: We have just got back from the Sooke Symphony’s Secret
Garden Tour. There were Pale Tiger Swallowtails in the gardens from Cooper’s Cove
to French Beach The last garden in the 10000 numbers on West Coast Road had
7 of them cruising the flower beds.


Satyr Comma Polygonia satyrus (Lep.:Nymphalidae)
Rosemary Jorna


Satyr Comma Polygonia satyrus (Lep.:Nymphalidae)
Rosemary Jorna


Satyr Comma Polygonia satyrus (Lep.:Nymphalidae)
Rosemary Jorna


Western Tiger Swallowtail Papilio rutulus (Lep.:Papilionidae)
Rosemary Jorna


Pale Tiger Swallowtail Papilio eurymedon (Lep.:Papilionidae)
Rosemary Jorna


Tule Bluet Enallagma carunculatum (Odo.:Coenagrionidae)
Rosemary Jorna


Tule Bluet Enallagma carunculatum (Odo.:Coenagrionidae)
Rosemary Jorna
Ken Vaughan sends some dragonflies from the Beaver Lake Ponds, May 31.


Cardinal Meadowhawk Sympetrum illotum (Odo.:Libellulidae)
Ken Vaughan


Dot-tailed Whiteface Leucorrhinia intacta (Odo.:Libelluluidae)
Ken Vaughan


Four-spotted Skimmer Libellula quadrimaculata (Odo.:Libellulidae)
Ken Vaughan

 

Libby Avis sends pictures of the caterpillars of Yponomeuta padella from the May 24 Metchosin Bioblitz.


Yponomeuta padella (Lep.:Yponomeutidae) Libby Avis


Yponomeuta padella (Lep.:Yponomeutidae) Libby Avis

Marie O’Shaughnessy writes: More butterflies from Government House, Monday May 26, 2014. Despite the wind these little gems did manage to alight upon the Rhodos, Ginkgo tree and other chosen delights. Found two Red Admirals which was nice. The most abundant butterfly at this time appears to be the Cabbage White as well as the Western Tiger Swallowtail.


Pale Tiger Swallowtail Papilio eurymedon (Lep.:Papilionidae) Marie O’Shaughnessy


Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta (Lep.:Nymphalidae) Marie O’Shaughnessy


Red Admiral Vanessa atalanta (Lep.:Nymphalidae) Marie O’Shaughnessy


Cabbage White Pieris rapae (Lep.:Pieridae) Marie O’Shaughnessy

Bill Katz sends a photo of three Pandemis cerasana on Summit Hill, May 29. Two of them in a private moment, and a voyeur, or perhaps a jilted lover.


Pandemis cerasana (Lep.:Tortricidae) Bill Katz

He sends photos of two moths from Prospect Community Hall, June 1.


Spotted Tiger Moth Lophocampa maculata
(Lep.:Erebidae -Arctiinae)
Bill Katz


Herald Moth Scoliopteryx libatrix
(Lep.:Erebidae – Scoliopteriginae)
Bill Katz

 

Jeremy Tatum sends a photo of a caterpillar of Orthosia hibisci from Blenkinsop Lake, and a caterpillar and chrysalis of a Sara Orange-tip from Munn Road.


Orthosia hibisci (Lep.:Noctuidae) Jeremy Tatum


Sara Orange-tip Anthocharis sara (Lep.:Pieridae)
Jeremy Tatum


Sara Orange-tip Anthocharis sara (Lep.:Pieridae)
Jeremy Tatum