Paper wasps scour milkweed leaf tops, hungry for aphid “honeydew” frass
(noted in this 2017 post) dropped from leaf bottoms above.

Clockwise from top left:
Guinea wasp (Polistes exclamans),  Northern paper wasp (Polistes fuscatus), Metricus paper wasp (Polistes metricus), European paper wasp (Polistes dominula).

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Fall webworms make a nursery of the mulberry tree, devouring leaves under silken cover.
How many will survive fall and winter, pupating on the ground below,
to emerge as moths (Hyphantria cunea) in spring?

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The rhythm of their lights still freshly impressing the mind, I thought
I’d discovered a late season firefly. But its sudden spring from sight left
a more telling impression: Disonycha glabrata, the pigweed flea beetle.

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A cuckoo wasp (Chrysis angolensis species, I believe) takes a shine to the milkweed leaves.

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Surviving, colored design fading, a toothed brown carpet moth
(Xanthorhoe lacustrata) shows the beauty of its aging.

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It’s been two blooms since the milkweed received this plume moth.

Still uncertain about the species, I’ll venture narrowing it down to

Himmelman’s (Geina tenuidactylus) or Buck’s (Geina Bucksi) Plume Moth.

Based on illustrations in the Peterson Field Guide to Moths of Northeastern

North America (Beadle & Leckie, 2012)–and a hunch, I guess–my bet’s on Buck’s.

 

 

 

 

 

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Surprising relief —                                  each moth rising                                     before the mower.

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A caterpillar, it is said, likes the Virginia creeper inching along our woodland edge.
An adult will fly to flowers plentiful in neighboring gardens.
We met once in May 2015.
Have our paths not crossed since then?

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Commonly named for eating Asclepias incarnata (not  pictured),

a Swamp milkweed leaf beetle (Labidomera clivicollis)

makes do in our patch of Common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca).

 

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Blue dasher                        (Pachydiplax longipennis)                        preparing to eat.

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