July is a rather slow month for wildlife in my area so I like to turn the camera on bugs and butterflies because they seem to be plentiful during the month of July. July is for bugs and butterflies!
This July has been no exception to that thought, either. I have had plenty of luck tracking down a bunch of new to me and newly caught on camera little ones that I thought I’d share.
Long-Tailed Dance Fly
The Long-Tailed Dance Fly – Rhamphomyia longicauda is an interesting insect and has taken me two summers to be able to catch on camera. You can see them in swarms a few feet off the ground toward dusk in heavily wooded areas here in Wisconsin.
The males will go around during the day and collect small insects and wrap them in silk to gift to females because the only way a female will mate with a male is for the male to offer a gift of an insect. Smart female 🙂
At dusk, it is near impossible to capture one of these flies on camera. I was lucky enough for this one to land on a blade of grass and I quickly captured an image with flash, which gave me a sense of accomplishment.
Augochlora Pura Bee
A metallic green bee thats name means pure magnificent green – which is fitting. You will see this bee out pollinating flowers until late October in Wisconsin when it goes into hibernation under tree bark or in logs until spring.
Ole’ Goofy Eyes
The eyes on this mayfly (Hexagenia limbata) kill me. I giggle every time I see them.
Crambus patella aka snout moth. These are the moths you might see flying around your yard at times if you take a walk through during July and August.
If you do, you may wish to treat your lawn will sod webworm granulating formulas before you start seeing dead patches. The moths are harmless but lay eggs that hatch into worms that eat the roots of your grass.
Additional Reading: Common Lawn Pests
There is life around the milkweed plants currently. Plenty of hungry caterpillars eating all the leaves.
Happy To See Life
Weekly checks on the two years seed collections of milkweed plants this week has proven to be fruitful. There are tons of Monarch caterpillars. This puts a smile on my face.
Additional Reading: Lifecycle of the Monarch / How To Tell Male From Female / Make Butterfly Nectar / Feeding & Attracting Butterflies
Bumble Bee on Purple Clover
Mr bumbles is getting his fill of sweet purple clover nectar.
This tan planthopper is hanging out in the shade. It is way too hot in the sun today – even I have found myself trying to hide in the shadows of the shade.
Checking up on the wildflowers today as well. Wildflowers are an excellent source for trying to find bugs and butterflies to photograph.
Pictured is the fruit of the mayapple wildflower developing.
Additional Reading: 10 Wildflowers To Plant For Birds / How To Keep Bird Bath Fresh & Clean / All About the Mayapple Wildflower
Wild Purple Cone Flowers
Right now the Echinacea purpurea (Eastern purple coneflower) which are native wildflowers that are cultivated and also grown in flower gardens look fabulous. They are standing tall, proud and are perfect.
Northern Pearly-eye Butterfly
I’m seeing a healthy population of Northern Pearly-eye (Enodia anthedon) all along my woodland paths and also the meadow and wildflower areas surrounding the pond area that I walk.
A Joy To See
It has been a joy to see a large increase of the Northern Pearly eyes this year.
Monarch on Purple Clover
Monarchs, Pearly eyes and Red Admirals are the three species I have seen a healthy population of in my area.
Damsel in Distress
Doesn’t it look like this damselfly is screaming at me? It isn’t, but it sounded good. Damselflies mouths are always moving – I think it is because they are always eating something.
Hanging out in the wildflower fields you sometimes get to share the space with critters that do not crawl on you, which is a plus.
I’m not sure if the buck or myself was keeping a closer watch. The buck was grazing on and off and would go behind the bushes and come back out and glance my way.
Sandhill in the Setting Sun
A sandhill crane or two will always seem to fly in just before sunset and walk around the fields. You always know when they are coming.
Just calling this little guy orbs because I know he is an orbweaver of some type and part of the Araneidae family.
Pictured is the female common scorpionfly. Scorpionflies do not bite or sting and do not bother plants or crops.
As an added bonus, they are fun critters to look at close up because they are different than most insects. Additional post on the common scorpionfly.
Female Widow Skimmer
I said that July is for bugs and butterflies, and that is no lie. This female widow skimmer was a delight to see. Just a beautiful dragonfly and that yellow stripe on her back really stands out.
What Does the Rest of the Month Hold?
The first two weeks has been wonderful hunting down bugs and butterflies.
I can’t wait to see if the rest of the month continues to be productive. Hope you enjoyed the images.
Until next time friends, take care!
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