I took today off to do some atlas work at my block in Dunstable, so of course I have a pile of insect photos and almost no birds.
Salmon Brook was loaded with odes, including tons of Lancet Clubtails and tons of River Jewelwings.
Although those were good (first time I’ve seen them in numbers), the single Sparkling Jewelwing was better.
After mucking around there for an hour or so, getting soaked and coated in pollen in the process, I moved on to the pond in the center of town. Not much for birds, but more clubtails and a few darners flying around. I spent awhile working on getting a shot of one of the darners and didn’t really succeed.
Watching with binoculars, I think I got enough to say it’s a Cyrano Darner. It had big green stripes on the thorax, which would be either Cyrano or Swamp and I think they were too thick for Swamp. I also didn’t notice any rings on the abdomen, which should have been noticeable if it were a Swamp.
After giving up on that, I drove around a bit and finally found some conservation land way up on High St. almost at the New Hampshire border. Walking in, a spiketail immediately flew by. Fortunately, it landed. Unfortunately it was way high up and I could only see the lower side. I took a quick shot then tried to back up but it took off again and disappeared.
Not sure which one it is, although from the little I can make out, Twin-spotted seems most probable. 20081231: After going through every photo I could find, I believe it to be an Arrowhead Spiketail.
The area was quite interesting with a good variety of habitat. In an open area, I found another scutellaris Tiger Beetle.
Further on, this moth flew by. It appears to be one of the Chytolita species, but I don’t know which one yet.
On my way back, I heard a Pileated Woodpecker and had a couple American Ladies and Eastern Pine Elfins. Back at the spiketail spot, no luck finding that, but 2 young hawks were nice (now to figure out broad-wing versus red-shoulder and what that means for the atlas).
Back at the car, I cranked up the ac and sat for a couple minutes. Of course, not 10 seconds after I turned the car on did the spiketail buzz past. Oh well, back to Salmon Brook to chase some of the bugs around.
Back at Salmon Brook, I was quite surprised to find a Meadowhawk immediately. Seems rather early.
I mucked around for probably 45 minutes, not really finding much new. Lots of Turquoise Bluets with a few Stream thrown in and a few Violet Dancers as well. The jewelwings were putting on all sorts of displays hovering and flopping in the water. My first Viceroy of the year was good as well. Back at the car, I noticed a pair of mating tiger moths.
Now to figure out which ones.
Considering the heat, not a bad day at all.