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 ( 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.

April 20 morning


April 20 morning

[This item should have been posted on the evening of August 17, but, writes Jeremy Tatum, my computer refused to behave itself on that date and it wouldn’t do what it was told.  Apologies to Mark for the delay.]

   Mark Wynja writes: On August 13 I went to the Englishman River Estuary in Parksville to photograph butterflies. There were 6-8 Common Wood Nymphs, 4 Purplish Coppers, and at least 50 Woodland Skippers. As I was photographing a Purplish Copper, a large skipper flew in and landed among the many smaller Woodland Skippers nectaring on Pearly Everlasting. Upon seeing the underside I immediately recognized it as a Branded Skipper. I returned on subsequent days and have seen at least four separate individuals. The habitat is similar to that of Cordova/Saanichton Spit with fields of grass and lots of blooming Gumweed. I believe this is the “Western/Oregon” Branded Skipper Hesperia comma colorado. Lunabelle Loiseau-Tremblay saw two more on Quadra Island on August 8.

“Western” Branded Skipper Hesperia comma colorado (Lep.: Hesperiidae) Mark Wynja

“Western” Branded Skipper Hesperia comma colorado (Lep.: Hesperiidae) Mark Wynja

Crab Spider Misumena vatia (Ara.: Thomisidae)

“Western” Branded Skipper Hesperia comma colorado (Lep.: Hesperiidae)

Mark Wynja

Top:  “Western” Branded Skipper Hesperia comma colorado  (Lep.: Hesperiidae)

Bottom:  Woodland Skippers Ochlodes sylvanoides (Lep.: Hesperiidae)

Mark Wynja


August 19

2018 August 19


    More moth pictures from Metchosin, by Jochen Möhr.   Thanks to Libby Avis for help with the identifications.


Plemyria georgii (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr


Oligia divesta (Lep.: Noctuidae)  Jochen Möhr


Neoalcis californiaria (Lep.: Geometridae)  Jochen Möhr




Alucita montana (Lep.: Alucitidae)  Jochen Möhr


   These moths should be careful not to wander into the Kemp Lake area, where Rosemary Jorna photographed the following fearful creature:


Eratigena duellica (Ara.: Agelenidae)  Rosemary Jorna


August 18

2018 August 18


   Sonia Voicescu writes:  I was at Rithet’s Bog on Wednesday (August 15) and I saw the following:

9 Vancouver Island Ringlets (2nd brood of the summer is out and doing well it seems)

3 Cabbage Whites

1 Lorquin’s Admiral

2 Pine Whites

24 Woodland skippers

Ringlet (Large Heath) Coenonympha tullia

(Lep.: Nymphalidae – Satyrinae)

Sonia Voicescu

Woodland Skipper Ochlodes sylvanoides (Lep.: Hesperiidae) Sonia Voicescu

Woodland Skipper Ochlodes sylvanoides (Lep.: Hesperiidae) Sonia Voicescu

   Jeremy Tatum writes:   Cabbages are not the only plants that Cabbage White caterpillars will eat.  Here is one found on Horseradish at King’s Pond, Ascot Drive.  Also there today I saw a Lorquin’s Admiral.


Cabbage White Pieris rapae (Lep.: Pieridae)  Jeremy Tatum




August 17 morning

2018 August 17 morning


   Aziza Cooper writes:   On Wednesday August 15, I saw these two moths across from McTavish Park and Ride at the northbound bus shelter along the east side of the Pat Bay Highway.

Silver-spotted Tiger Moth Lophocampa argentata (Lep.: Erebidae – Arctiinae)  Aziza Cooper



Emmelina monodactyla (Lep.: Pterophoridae)  Aziza Cooper


   Interesting way in which the moth is holding its middle pair of legs.  The left one is held closely against the hind leg.  The right one is held closely against the foreleg.  At a casual glance it looks as though it has only four legs.