|Acmaeodera sphaeralceae on fleabane|
Some Comanche Paper Wasps were also flying and another big black bee-like thing that turned out to be a Scarab Beetle, Euphoria verticalis. The beetle achieves the bee-like flight by keeping its black elytra closed and pushing the membraneous wings out from under them through lateral gaps.
I beat some Mesquite and Palo Verde and a nice snakefly ( Raphidiidae » Agulla) landed on my sheet. I do not find these often. According to literature, Snakeflies are confined to arboreal habitats in the broadest sense, including all types of forests, macchias and even biotopes with scattered shrubs.
|Pachypsylla celtidisvesicula (Hackberry Blister Gall Psyllid)|
This came from an oak at Molino Basin. The winter-green live oaks are just leaving out, shedding their old leaves. I think it is a nymph of a leafhopper.
At Molino I wanted to look for Osmia, the bee genus that supposedly is the main pollinator of Manzanita. The bushes were blooming beautifully But I found mostly Honey Bees, some big black Carpenter Bees, some Hover Flies in the genus Copestylum (3 species). The only blueish green bee that I found will probably turn out to be in the genus Andrena. No Osmia at all. But they were there in other years! I did see a couple of Golden-headed Scalloped-wings
On a Manzanita Leaf, I found this little mound of gello. Because it was only 4 mm long I wasn't sure if it might be a cluster of eggs? But after looking at the enlarged photo, and seeing it moving around the jar I'm keeping it in, I thought that it is a slug caterpillar, just a very young one.
I learned now from Bruce Walsh that it is rather the caterpillar of Dalcerides ingenita, the only Dalcerid around here. It does not seem to feed on the Mamzanita leaves I collected it with - it's crawling around in search of better food.Bruce thinks it's an oak feeder.
In other climates I would have expected Burrowing Beetles to arrive soon, but here the little corpses attracted only ants.
On blooming Rhus (?) I found some Cryptocephaline Leafbeetles and an Small assassin Bug genus Lophoscutus. Only when I checked out my photos, I found a Green Lynx Spider - do you see it?
|Chelinidea vittiger (Cactus Coreid)|
I saw tiny Scudderia sp. nymphs and a big, adult Schistocerca nitens. These bird grasshoppers seem to winter as adults here in Arizona. At nearly 3 inches long, my biggest bug of the day
|Coleothorpa axillaris l|