Monthly Archives: April 2010

Friday Flower: Red Buckeye

Beetles, spiders, and snakes were not the only delights that Rich and I saw as we hiked the lower stretch of the Ozark Trail’s Wappapello Section in early April.  Entering the rich, moist, east-facing slopes overlooking the Black River valley, the … Continue reading

Posted in Hippocastanaceae, Plantae | Tagged , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Rough Green Snake

My string of good herp luck looks like it might continue in 2010.  You may recall the super-aggressive prairie rattlesnake and uncooperative dusty hognosed snake that I featured in 2008 (or not – my readership was rather minuscule back then), followed by … Continue reading

Posted in Reptilia, Vertebrata | Tagged , , , , | 24 Comments

My first jumping spider

As a long-time professional and avocational entomologist, I find beauty and fascination in all manner of joint-legged creatures. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and most people don’t exactly share my passion for these animals. Sure, … Continue reading

Posted in Arachnida, Araneae | Tagged , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

Pseudomethoca simillima – a model for Enoclerus ichneumoneus?

Last week, I posted the above photograph of Enoclerus ichneumoneus (orange-banded checkered beetle) and mentioned its possibly mimetic appearance to velvet ants in the family Mutillidae (order Hymenoptera).  By some stroke of serendipity, I encountered a species of Mutillidae the very … Continue reading

Posted in Cleridae, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera, Mutillidae | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Revision of the Formicidae of North America

I recently came across this ant in the southeastern Missouri Ozarks sitting in a hole in the trunk of a standing dead black oak (Quercus velutinus) tree, apparently guarding the entrance to its nest. This big black ant is frequently … Continue reading

Posted in Formicidae, Hymenoptera | Tagged , , , , , , , | 64 Comments

North America’s second-rarest pine

During last year’s trip to Lake Tahoe, I made it a goal to find all of the 11 conifer species occurring naturally in the Lake Tahoe Basin.  It took some effort, some good references (Arno 1973, Graf 1999, Lanner 1999, … Continue reading

Posted in Pinaceae, Plantae | Tagged , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Orange-banded checkered beetle

As a student of woodboring beetles for more than a quarter-century now, I’ve had occasion to encounter a goodly number of checkered beetles (family Cleridae) – both in the field and as a result of rearing them from dead wood. … Continue reading

Posted in Cleridae, Coleoptera | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 17 Comments