Moth Monday After Dark: Diamondback Moth

Monday, September 7th, 2009

Before I left Irvine, I was starting to get in the habit of walking around Mason Park after dark, something I’d be a little more nervous about doing in Prospect Park, especially with a couple of thousand dollars worth of camera equipment around my neck. However the few lights in the park really did attract some beautiful insects you’d be hard-pressed to find in the daytime including this Diamondback Moth I found on my very last nightly foray:

Small moth walking on wall

Plutella xylostella, Hodges #2366
William R. Mason Regional Park

Moth Monday Returns to New York: Common Tan Wave Moth

Monday, August 31st, 2009

I missed Moth Monday last week because I was busy packing for my move back to Brooklyn, as well as trying to squeeze in a few more state birds in California. I didn’t quite hit 300, but Little Blue Heron and Semipalmated Sandpiper were still nice additions.

I’m now back in New York. Federal Express hasn’t dropped off the Firewire disk where I store my raw photos, but here’s a JPEG from 2007, and in honor of my return, it’s from Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. This is Hodges 7132, the Common Tan Wave Moth:

pale white geometer moth on green leaf
Common Tan Wave Moth, Pleuroprucha insulsaria
Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge; August 12, 2007

Moth Monday from Santiago Oaks: Red-bordered Wave Moth

Monday, August 17th, 2009

Santiago Oaks Regional park in Orange has been one of the best sites for finding medium to large moths since I moved to southern California. This geometer from August 2 is Hodges #7114 – Idaea demissaria:

tan moth upside down

Thanks to Bob Patterson for the ID.

Taiwanese Leafhopper

Friday, August 14th, 2009

4mm yellow leafhopper with false eyespots
Sophonia orientalis
Irvine, 2009-07-16

This introduced species from Taiwan shows up on my balcony occasionally. It’s a little less than half a centimeter long. The spots on its hindquarters are fake eyes. In the field at night they really do look like eyes, and consequently the bug appears to walk backwards.

Moth Monday: Creamsicle Moth

Monday, August 10th, 2009

Here’s one I just found at San Joaquin yesterday, so the ID’s still a little hesitant; but I think it’s Hodges#4866, Abegesta reluctalis. Could also be a similar species in the genus. Thanks to Maury J. Heiman for the ID.

Light orange and white striped moth

This picture is quite a bit larger than life size. The moth itself was less than a centimeter.

Moth Monday: A New Species for Orange County

Monday, August 3rd, 2009

Lately I’ve been turning on my 2nd floor balcony light in the evening after dark to see what shows up. This was a particularly active individual that was crawling around the walls. It’s about the size of a large ant.

Leucogoniella californica, Hodges 1848

This is just one of several new moths I’ve tallied without evening stepping outside my front door. It doesn’t seem to have previously been recorded in Orange County, and this may the the first BugGuide record.