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.

November 17

2019 November 17

 

   Butterfly!   The butterfly season is not yet over!   It’s a dark, soggy, rainy November day – not the sort of day to look for butterflies.  Yet Anne-Marie Hart and Tina Akhavan have just seen a California Tortoiseshell sunning (!) on a Manzanita bush at the Highlands Community Hall on Finlayson Arm Road.

 

California Tortoiseshell Nymphalis californica (Lep.: Nymphalidae)  Tina Akhavan

 

   Jeremy Tatum shows two Winter Moths from his Saanich apartment.

 

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

 

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

 

   Jochen Möhr’s moths from Metchosin this morning.  No photographs taken.

 

3 Drepanulatrix sp.  

1 Epirrita autumnata

7 Operophtera sp.

1 Sunira decipiens (same individual at same spot for three days now)

 

 

 

November 16

2019 November 16

 

   Jochen Möhr’s moths from Metchosin this morning:

 

2 Drepanulatrix sp.

2 Epirrita autumnata

4 Operophtera brumata 

1 Sunira decipiens

 


Epirrita autumnata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 


Epirrita autumnata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 


Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 


Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 


Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 


Drepanulatrix sp.  (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 


Drepanulatrix sp.  (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 

November 15

2019 November 15

 

   Jochen Möhr’s moths from Metchosin this morning:

 

3 Epirrita autumnata

1 Operophtera brumata

1 Drepanulatrix sp

1 Sunira decipiens

 


Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

 


Epirrita autumnata (Lep.: Geometridae) Jochen Möhr

 


Drepanulatrix sp. (Lep.: Geometridae) Jochen Möhr

 


Sunira decipiens (Lep.: Noctuidae) Jochen Möhr

November 14

2019 November 14

 

   Jeremy Tatum writes:  Today is a day for small, obscure and unfamiliar invertebrates, mostly from Mr E, but we’ll start with one from my Saanich apartment this morning:

 

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

 

   Next, a bark louse, Family Psocoptera.  Libby Avis usually identifies most of our moths for us, but this time she excelled by identifying this obscure insect as well!

 

Bark louse Graphopsocus cruciatus (Pso.: Stenopsocidae)   Mr E

 

Bark louse Graphopsocus cruciatus (Pso.: Stenopsocidae)   Mr E

 

   Next, some extraordinary photographs of a syrphid larva  (Syrphidae = Hover Flies, also known as Flower Flies) apparently feeding on the slime of a Banana Slug.  Mr E even managed a superb movie of this larva in action.

 

Syrphid larva on mantle of Banana Slug Ariolimax columbianus   Mr E

 

Syrphid larva on mantle of Banana Slug Ariolimax columbianus   Mr E

 

Syrphid larva on mantle of Banana Slug Ariolimax columbianus   Mr E

 

 

Syrphid larva on mantle of Banana Slug Ariolimax columbianus   Mr E

 

   Last, some photographs of globose springtails.  Springtails (not insects these days, but hexapods) were formerly classified in a single Order Collembola.  Collembola is currently a Subclass of the Class Entognatha, divided into several Orders, the globose springtails being in the Order Symphypleona.   Something like that, anyway.   We believe Mr E’s springtails are in the Family Dicyrtomidae, genus Ptenothrix.  I shan’t tempt fate further by guessing at the exact species.

 

Globose springtail Ptenothrix sp. (Symphypleona:  Dicyrtomidae)  Mr E

 

Globose springtail Ptenothrix sp. (Symphypleona:  Dicyrtomidae)  Mr E

 

Globose springtail Ptenothrix sp. (Symphypleona:  Dicyrtomidae)  Mr E

Globose springtail Ptenothrix sp. (Symphypleona:  Dicyrtomidae)  Mr E

 

Globose springtails Ptenothrix sp. (Symphypleona:  Dicyrtomidae)  Mr E

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 13

2019 November 13

 

    Jochen Möhr’s moths from Metchosin this morning, autumn soon giving way to winter.

 

Autumnal Moth Epirrita autumnata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

Winter Moth Operophtera brumata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr