Garden beetles

Clytus ruricola

We’ve hit the moving crunch. Our moving truck is booked for Tuesday, though I plan to call tomorrow morning to see if we might be able to pick it up at closing tomorrow, instead of opening on Tuesday (it’s all the same to them, as far as rental potential – they don’t lose any business by giving it to us when they lock up Monday night). That would allow us a few extra hours to load it so we wouldn’t have as much to do the day of.

Although our internet won’t officially be disconnected till either late Monday or Tuesday morning, I probably won’t have any free time for blogging again until after we’re moved in. We’re not sure when our internet will be hooked up at the new house, they seem to put you on an order list and then give you a call a few days in advance once they know when they can fit you in. We hope it might be by the end of the week, though there’s the potential for it to be later than that.

Because I won’t be online to be able to post during that period, I thought I would schedule a few short posts to go up in my absence. These will be just a couple of photos each, a week-long Monday Miscellany. Fingers crossed that I’m back on the web quickly.

Today’s photos are of a bunch of beetles that I found hanging about my garden recently. This first one is Clytus ruricola. I noticed it when I was loading some plants in to the car to drop off at the new house this afternoon. I’m not sure what plant it was on, I just happened to spot it after it had fallen off and was crawling around the floor. Thinking it was a wasp, I left the door open and hoped it would leave. When I came back with the next plant it was at the edge of the seat and tumbled out to the ground.

That’s when I noticed it wasn’t a wasp. It’s an excellent mimic, however, right down to the way it moves. Most beetles move in a relatively fluid motion, but this one was very jerky, in a perfect imitation of how a wasp moves. Had me fooled! The species is found through the northeast in May through July. Its host trees are decaying hardwoods such as maples.

Trigonarthris proxima

This one is Trigonarthris proxima, a flower longhorn in the subfamily Lepturinae. I found it while admiring my garden one morning, sitting on the Sweet Williams. The flower longhorns, as their name implies, are often come to flower blossoms to eat the pollen.

unidentified beetle

This final one was also on the Sweet Williams. I flipped back and forth through my Kaufman Insects (the only guide not yet packed away) and investigated possible genera on BugGuide.net, and finally found a match among the flower longhorns as well (not terribly surprising). Apparently with this group the broad “shoulders” where the thorax meets the wings and the tapering toward the end of the abdomen are characteristic field marks (it’s very pronounced in the species in the second photo, but the angle that I took the photo at doesn’t show it). This species is Analeptura lineola. The adults are around from May to August. The larvae are associated with a variety of hardwoods.

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4 responses to “Garden beetles

  1. Great shots! Amazing the kind of beauty and diversity you can find simply by walking around the garden.

    Good luck with the move!

  2. Good luck with your move today!

    The beetle photos are lovely.

  3. I love your photos, they have great detail. I always learn something from your blog. Thanks.

  4. excellent shots! makes insects look pretty…. :)

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