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 (tatumjb352@gmail.com). 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 November 2

2022  November 2

    Val George writes:  Yesterday, November 1, a Cabbage White butterfly flew in front of me when I was driving along Richmond Road near Mount Tolmie. I think this is the first time I’ve ever seen an adult of this species in November.

Yesterday Jochen Möhr in Metchosin photographed the underside of a geometrid moth.  He says he saw the upperside and that it was an Autumnal Moth Epirrita autumnataWhat else, he asks, would one expect at this time of year?  It is autumn, after all.  Well, we ask, can we agree that it is an Autumnal Moth from Jochen’s photograph?  Try this:  We can just  see the upperside costal margin of one wing.  Look carefully, millimetre by millimetre along the costa, all the way from apex to base.   Now compare what you see with the costa on Jochen’s October 28 photograph.  I think you’ll agree that the costas of the two moths agree perfectly, millimetre by millimetre.  In addition, we can see the prominent dark H in the middle of the forewing.  I think anyone who carries out this comparison carefully can scarcely doubt that today’s photograph is indeed that of an Autumnal Moth.

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

 

 

2022 November 1

2022 November 1

   Cheryl Hoyle photographed this grasshopper in View Royal.  We are grateful to James Miskelly for identifying it and providing additional comments.

Migratory Grasshopper Melanoplus sanguinipes (Orth.: Acrididae)  Cheryl Hoyle

Migratory Grasshopper Melanoplus sanguinipes (Orth.: Acrididae)  Cheryl Hoyle

 

Migratory Grasshopper Melanoplus sanguinipes (Orth.: Acrididae)  Cheryl Hoyle

   Janes Miskelly writes:  This one is Melanoplus sanguinipes. It’s the most abundant and widespread grasshopper on Vancouver Island and in southern BC in general. Many Melanoplus aren’t identifiable without reference to male features (this one is female) but we only have three species in the genus on Vancouver Island and they’re distinct enough from photos. 

 

2022 October 29

2022 October 29

    Jeremy Tatum writes:  Last night a worn and tattered moth flew into my bedroom in Saanich – worn, but recognizable as Triphosa haesitata.

 

American Tissue Moth Triphosa haesitata (Lep. Geometridae)  Jeremy Tatum

2022 October 28

2022 October 28

    Jochen Möhr writes from Metchosin:  Last night, in addition to the two Tetracis sp., which have been here for now three days, an Epirrita autumnata and a Thera juniperata.

 

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

 

Juniper Carpet Thera juniperata (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr

2022 October 27

2022 October 27

     Jeff Gaskin writes:  Just to let you know that Cabbage Whites are still around.  I saw four in the Gorge/Burnside community, including two at the Gorge Park community garden.

   Cheryl Hoyle sends the photograph below, taken in Metchosin, with the query:  Is this a termite?

Well, replies Jeremy Tatum, I was just about to make a fool of myself and reply no, it’s nothing at all like a termite – termites aren’t black.  But a little buzzer inside my head somewhere went off, and said Whoa!  Don’t be too hasty!  Have a look at https://inaturalist.ca/taxa/296465-Reticulitermes-hesperus    I think that’s exactly what it is – a termite!

Probably Reticulitermes hesperus (Blattodea: Rhinotermitidae)  Cheryl Hoyle