Here’s a “driveway moment,” but not the National Public Radio kind:*
After hovering around our faces for a comically long time, this little hoverfly decided the most attractive thing in the driveway was the eraser of a new Ticonderoga pencil. It hugged the pink tip while we examined it (such big eyes you have!), while we took photos, while we passed it between us, and even after we had to set the pencil on a rock because our hands had gotten tired. Continue reading “Driveway Hoverfly”→
I grew up thinking there was one kind of katydid: the big green jobs that sang their name at night. But apparently, there are oodles. We found this one, a Meadow Katydid (Conocephalis nemoralis?), lounging under the passionvine in the driveway. It didn’t seem to mind being borrowed for observation. It groomed itself nonstop in the cage, flicked its crazy-long antennae like an fly-fisher casting for trout, and sort of murmured. Continue reading “Meadow Katydid (in the driveway)”→
“It’ll take over,” our neighbor warned, followed by: “I cannot believe you planted Perilla.” But, I didn’t plant Perilla. Perilla just happens. This was years ago, and the first time I’d heard the name. Until then, I only knew it as the maroon thing that fluffed in every flower bed (and pot and driveway crack) if allowed, and that the leaves looked like basil but smelled like licorice. Continue reading “Driveway-Crack Flowers: Perilla”→
Found this lone lacewing egg on a passionvine leaf I picked for our Gulf Fritillary caterpillars. The eggs are exquisite: teeny TicTacs on hair-like stalks, usually laid in a row with spaces between (to prevent cannibalism amongst siblings). Continue reading “Lacewing egg”→
It looked like a tiny pebble, there on a leaf of my loofa gourd seedling. But it had the conical eyes of a gecko, and a smidge of white fluff coming out its rear. How could I not stop everything to figure out what it was? Continue reading “Planthopper nymph”→
Presenting: a fresh American toadlet.
Yesterday it still had a tail.
A few days ago it breathed through gills and was a vegetarian.
Today it has lungs and a carnivorous gut.
What a cutie. Continue reading “Toadlet”→
When you miss the caravan for the cedar glade field trip and try to find it on your own and no one at headquarters knows where the van was headed and you drive and drive where the brochure said it might be, but eventually give up and turn around.
when you start to notice what’s on the side of the road: Continue reading “Cedar Forest Road wildflowers”→
I knew they weren’t box-elder bugs, but what? Hundreds and hundreds were mating and scurrying about on a (stupid) bush honeysuckle covered with (stupid) English ivy. So I type “red shoulder bug,” into BugGuide and guess what they are?
“Red-shouldered Bugs.” Continue reading “Red-shouldered bugs and a fresh assassin”→