Thursday, August 2, 2012

Moths at My House

I'm back in Michigan after completing my third field season on Alaska's North Slope. I've really been enjoying being able to go birding! It is nice to bird in a place with trees and more passerines than just Lapland Longspur and Savannah Sparrow. I've tracked down a few warblers I missed earlier this year including Prothonotary and Cerulean. Flycatchers are still calling and I have seen Alder, Willow, Acadian, along with Eastern Wood Pewee. I'm leaving early tomorrow morning (8/3) for a trip to the UP to look for more birds/butterflies and moths.

Speaking of moths, I'm finally getting time to use my blacklight. I've only used it in my backyard in Holt, but the past two nights have turned up quite a diversity. I'm still trying to identify a lot of the smaller ones (and some of the bigger ones), but here are a few cool ones that made an appearance.

I'll start out with my personal favorite, Apantesis phalerata, or Harnessed Tiger Moth.

This one is a bit smaller, but is has a lot going on. The new Peterson moth guide leads me to ID this one as Cenopis reticulatana.

The biggest moth to visit was this Banded Tussock Moth, (Halysidota tessellaris).
I'm a fan of the strange looking moths, and this one sure did stick out. It is a Dark-Spotted Palthis or Palthis angulalis.

This one also has a strange appearance. It sits up on the front legs which are "hairy" if you will. It is a Boxed Leaftier or Galasa nigrinodis.

I'll be bringing the light with me on my trip to the UP this weekend. Hopefully being away from the city will help turn up even more moths. I could go for a Sphinx!

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