Monthly Archives: January 2011

Rush skeletonplant pea gall wasp

The Loess Hills landform along the western edge of Iowa and extreme northwestern Missouri is home to a unique assemblage of plants and animals.  The majority of these are associated with loess hilltop prairies – grassland remnants that have their origins in the … Continue reading

Posted in Asteraceae, Cynipidae, Hymenoptera | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Brazil Bugs #1

ID Challenge #3 update: I knew this would be a hard one, and so far nobody has figured this one out (only one commenter got the right order!).  I’ve released the comments gotten so far so you can see where things stand, and … Continue reading

Posted in Coreidae, Hemiptera, Lepidoptera, Noctuidae | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

ID Challenge #3

A straight-up identification challenge – see ID Challenge #2 for a detailed explanation of the rules: Photograph taken June 27, 2010 in northwestern Missouri.  Good luck! Copyright © Ted C. MacRae 2011

Posted in [No taxon] | Tagged , , , | 23 Comments

Calm waters, frenzied beetles

The North Fork River in south-central Missouri, like most Ozark rivers and streams, flows clear and cold over gravelled bottoms. Sustained year-round by the numerous seeps and springs that result from the region’s unique Karst geology, it meanders through a mix of … Continue reading

Posted in Coleoptera, Gyrinidae | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Diversity in Tiger Beetle Larval Burrows

One of the fascinating aspects of tiger beetle study is their often high degree of fidelity for specific habitats.  Some species prefer wet habitats, while others frequent the drier uplands.  Some like sand while others need clay.  Differences in salinity, vegetational cover, … Continue reading

Posted in Cicindelidae, Coleoptera | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 42 Comments

Red-eyed Devil

In June 1994, I made my first insect collecting trip to Big Bend National Park.  Both of my previous visits to Texas had been to the Lower Rio Grande Valley, so I was anxious to see what beetle treasures awaited … Continue reading

Posted in Orthoptera, Tettigoniidae | Tagged , , , , , , , | 29 Comments

ID Challenge #2

Here is another straight-up ID Challenge. Standard rules apply: Points awarded for correctly naming the order, family, genus, and species (2 pts each). Bonus points may be given (at my discretion) for providing additional relevant information (e.g., diagnostic characters, biological/ecological uniquities, clever jokes, etc.).¹ … Continue reading

Posted in [No taxon] | Tagged , , , , , | 34 Comments

Monroe Canyon epilogue – Audubon’s tiger beetle

In my first post about Monroe Canyon in the Pine Ridge of northwestern Nebraska, I featured the sumptuous Cicindela lengi (blowout tiger beetle) – a target species for the trip and one of six tiger beetle species that Chris Brown … Continue reading

Posted in Cicindelidae, Coleoptera | Tagged , , , , , , , | 20 Comments