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.

2022 June 26 morning

2022 June 26 morning

    Gordon Hart sends a picture of a spider and a beetle.  Thanks to Thomas Barbin for identifying the spider as a male Misumena vatia – somewhat different from the familiar female!  There’s not much to go on for the beetle, but Scott Gilmore says he’ll have to “guess a little” and suggests Bruchidius villosus.

 

Male Misumena vatia (Ara.: Thomisidae) and possibly Bruchidius villosus (Col.: Chrysomelidae)

Gordon Hart

 

While fetching fresh Hardhack to feed her now ravenous Ceanothus Silk Moths, Rosemary found this noctuid caterpillar:

Aseptis binotata (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Rosemary Jorna

 

Mike Yip sends photographs of dragonflies seen in his Nanoose garden.   Thanks to Dr Rob Cannings for identifying them for us.

 

Blue-eyed Darner Rhionaeschna multicolor (Odo.: Aeshnidae)  Mike Yip

Common Green Darner Anax junius (Odo.: Aeshnidae)  Mike Yip

Common Whitetail Plathemis lydia (Odo.: Libellulidae)  Mike Yip

Blue Dasher Pachydiplax longipennis (Odo.: Libellulidae)  Mike Yip

 

Steven Roias has been watching two Polyphemus cocoons since last year, and he writes:  This morning, one of the two pupae hatched – a beautiful boy! We released him tonight in the backyard and watched him fly away. Now the great anticipation for the second pupa.

 

2022 June 25

2022 June 25

    Ann Tiplady sends photographs of the introduced European Garden Snail Cornu aspersum:

 

Garden Snail Cornu aspersum (Pul.: Helicidae)  Ann Tiplady

 

Garden Snail Cornu aspersum (Pul.: Helicidae)  Ann Tiplady

 

   Carl Hughes sends photographs of a caterpillar and subsequent chrysalis of a Lorquin’s Admiral on an apple tree at his Broadmead home.

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

 

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

   Rosemay Jorna sends photographs, from the Kemp Lake area, of 5th instar caterpillars of the Ceanothus Silk Moth Hyalophora euryalus as well as a 4th instar cast-off skin (exuviae).

Hyalophora euryalus (Lep.: Saturniidae)   Rosemary Jorna

 

 

Hyalophora euryalus (Lep.: Saturniidae)   Rosemary Jorna

 

 

Hyalophora euryalus 4th instar exuviae   Rosemary Jorna

 

   Jeff Gaskin writes:  June 24, I found a total of 19 Ringlets in Saanich.  2 were at Quick’s Bottom, 7 were at Viaduct Flats, and a further 10 were in the disc playing field at Layritz Park. Only one other butterfly could be found in that whole area and that was a Western Tiger Swallowtail.

  In Colquitz River Park north of Panama Flats there were only the following butterflies :  1 Cabbage White, 4 Lorquin’s Admirals,  2 Western Tiger Swallowtails and 2 Western Spring Azures.

 

   Aziza Cooper writes:  June 24, I went to the railroad tracks next to Goldstream campground. I found three Commas, possibly Satyr Commas [yes, that’s what I think they are, too.  One of them is on a stinging nettle.  –Jeremy T], four Pale Tiger Swallowtails and four Western Tiger Swallowtails, and six Western Spring Azures. There was also one Cinnabar Moth.

Satyr Comma Polygonia satyrus (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Aziza Cooper

Satyr Comma Polygonia satyrus (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Aziza Cooper

Satyr Comma Polygonia satyrus (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Aziza Cooper

Pale Tiger Swallowtails Papilio eurymedon (Lep.: Papilionidae)   Aziza Cooper

 

Western Spring Azure Celastrina echo (Lep.: Lycaenidae)  Aziza Cooper

   Gordon Hart writes:  My sighting news is fast becoming out of date, and today I hope to see some more butterflies, but I did have some success on Thursday, June 23 at the Pike Lake Substation ponds. I saw my first of the year Lorquin’s Admiral, a Western Spring Azure, and a Pale Tiger Swallowtail. There were also many dragonflies: California Darner, Dot-tailed Whiteface , and Western Pondhawk, among others.

Western Pondhawk  Erythemis collocata (Odo.: Libellulidae)  Gordon Hart

 

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

2022 June 23

2022 June 23

    Jeff Gaskin writes:  I saw 3 Mourning  Cloaks in three completely different spots on June 22, at Blenkinsop Lake.  Also, at the south end of the Blenkinsop Lake bridge amongst the stinging nettles was a Red Admiral.  At Swan Lake I finally saw my first of the year Lorquin’s Admiral.  I saw two there as well as a rather late Western Spring Azure,  5 Western Tiger Swallowtails and 2 Cabbage Whites.

Kirsten Mills told me she saw an Anise Swallowtail at the top of Observatory Hill on June 22.  Also there included 7 Pale Tiger Swallowtails, 3 Western Tiger Swallowtails, a Red Admiral, a Painted Lady, 2 Western Spring Azures, a Cabbage White, and 2 Lorquin’s Admirals.

   Aziza Cooper sends photographs of a butterfly and a bee from James Heights, June 23:

Pale Tiger Swallowtail Papilio eurymedon (Lep.: Papilionidae)  Aziza Cooper

 

Honey Bee Apis mellifera (Hym.: Apidae)  Aziza Cooper

   Jeremy Tatum sends a photograph of a moth reared from an egg found on Mahonia at Munn Road, May 25:

Coryphista meadii (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jeremy Tatum

2022 June 21

2022 June 21

    We may not have had much of a Spring, but welcome to Summer, which started at 2:13 PDT this morning.

No sooner had we described (yesterday) Noctua pronuba as an “abundant and ubiquitous” moth than two more photographs arrived today – one from Margaret McKenzie from her barbecue table (which we are trying to locate) and one from Aziza Cooper from Bowker Street.  Margaret noted the yellow hindwings.  The challenge would be to photograph the hindwings, which none of us managed to do!

 

Large Yellow Underwing Noctua pronuba (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Margaret McKenzie

Large Yellow Underwing Noctua pronuba (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Aziza Cooper

  Aziza also reported a Ringlet (Large Heath) at Island View Beach:

 

Ringlet Coenonympha tullia (Lep.: Nymphalidae – Satyrinae)  Aziza Cooper

 

In the Highlands yesterday Gordon counted 1 Green Comma, 2 worn Western Spring Azures, 2 Cedar Hairstreaks, and one Western Tiger Swallowtail.

 

   Bryan Gates photographed the butterfly below along Uplands Road on June 20.  It has no maculation and I can’t be sure (writes Jeremy Tatum) what it is, but I’m thinking probably a worn Cabbage White.  We’d be glad to hear of any opinions.

 

Pieris rapae? (Lep.: Pieridae)  Bryan Gates

2022 June 20

2022 June 20

    Jeremy Tatum sends photographs of Hyphantria cunea from the Martindale Valley, and Noctua pronuba from Grant Street, Victoria.  Hyphantria cunea is the adult form of the “Fall Webworm”.  Noctua pronuba is the abundant and ubiquitous introduced European Large Yellow Underwing.

 

Hyphantria cunea (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae)  Jeremy Tatum

 

Noctua pronuba (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jeremy Tatum

   Jeremy Tatum reports that there were a Painted Lady and a Red Admiral on the Mount Tolmie reservoir at 6:00 p.m. this evening.  Both were rather worn, yet I believe the Red Admiral was not the same individual that has been reported there on and off since May 8