Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Eastern Cicada Killers at Breakneck Hill Conservation Land

I had another appointment for fun times with the dentist so I was only able to walk after work at BHCL today.  I did see and photograph a monarch tonight!  It was a male.  Hope he finds a mate!  I keep looking for caterpillars but so far have not spotted any.

Monarch (male)

Here are the other things that caught my eye:

Common Ringlet


On the trail along the front of the woods (that separate the front meadow from the back), I have seen 3-4 large wasps with orange wings flying around where the trail exits the woods.  I have always moved through this area as fast as I could, not knowing if they might be aggressive.  Tonight, there was only one.  I backed up a bit, and it flew towards a sandy hole in the ground a few times, so I focused on the hole and caught a photo.  I was able to ID it as an Eastern Cicada Killer wasp.  Colonies of this type of digger wasp can number over 100, so I guess just seeing 3-4 was lucky!  According to my bug guide, although they look intimidating (and I agree with that), they rarely sting or pay any attention to people.  Their holes can be up to four feet deep.  There are several holes in the area, too.  Glad to finally know what it is!

Eastern Cicada Killer
(a member of the Digger Wasp family)

White-Spotted Sable moth (a real small one)

Song Sparrow

Great Black Wasp

Baltimore Oriole

 Song Sparrow

The clouds were pretty again tonight.

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