Thursday, May 22, 2014

Leafhopper? Spider?! I barely...

Welcome back. I've been busy graduating from college, but fear not! I have not acquired one of those pesky "jobs" so in between my allergy medication-induced naps I plan on spending as much time outside being a naturalist and improving my photography skills. I've got some exciting ideas around good ole upstate New York, but yesterday I stayed close to home. Literally. Due to my fatigued state (and lack of a car), I spent a good chunk of time running around my yard and lying in the tick infested grass, taking pictures of whatever I could find. Here are a few pictures of what I found.

Wow! Look at those antennae! 

And we're off to a good start. Apparently that monstrosity is called a fishfly. The description in my field guide states that "these large insects are easy to capture because they fly so slowly and are so poorly coordinated." Poor guy. He was probably last pick in gym class.


This is a leafhopper nymph. I wish this photo was just a little bit sharper, but it's pretty cool how the lawn looks like a forest of its own. One day that little guy will grow up to be the slightly less tiny insect shown below.


Actually, I'm not entirely sure if those are the same species, but the first picture is definitely an immature individual. You may have not seen these bugs this close before, but you have definitely seen them if you've ever walked across a lawn and noticed a small swarm fleeing from your footsteps.

Before you get bored or creeped out by all the weird things, here's a less offensive insect.

Butterfly 2
Everyone loves butterflies!

Followed by one of the most reviled arthropods: a spider surrounded by all its leftovers. 

Everyone's favorite animal, second to snakes.

Thus begins my journey to document the fauna of the exciting temperate northeast.

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