My favorite holly tree at work bloomed late last week! This one tree is loaded with insects throughout its bloom and I absolutely love exploring it and looking for insects lurking among the leaves. Once you notice one, you’ll see the most amazing variety of insects roaming about in the tree! Some things are small and hidden, and others are right out in the open where they’re easy to spot, such as this leaf-footed bug:
I believe this is an eastern leaf-footed bug, Leptoglossus phyllopus
I like the way the setting sun turned this normally somewhat drab insect such beautiful colors. I’m looking forward to exploring the tree more this year and seeing what other treasures I can find!
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One of my favorite extracurricular activities of all time was participating in a biological survey on a Mexican nature preserve/ranch that is co-managed by US and Mexican conservation organizations. A big group of 15-20 people traveled to Mexico on four separate occasions and collected, processed, and identified as many biological specimens as we could over a 3-day period. I’d spend my days collecting aquatic insects and helping with other surveys, then we’d have a great dinner before everyone got down to sorting and IDing in the fabulous ranch house. It was a stunningly beautiful place, especially at sunset:
Sunset at Los Fresnos
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