by Carl Strang
Today, some recent photos of insects from Mayslake Forest Preserve.
Broad-winged bush katydid, July 26
Broad-winged bush katydids have been a personal challenge to photograph. They are very good at staying out of sight, and quick to flush when they know they have been seen. This one was on the move, making it easier to spot, and I was able to go slowly enough to get in a couple shutter clicks.
The red hind tibias are striking. They don’t seem to occur on every individual, but from photos made by others, and my own few observations, they seem to appear in this species more than others.
The banded longhorn beetle closely resembles Strangalia luteicornis, which also recently has been visiting Queen Anne’s lace.
Note the black antennae and thorax, and the more stripe-like elytra markings.
Here is Strangalia, for comparison.
Like Strangalia, the adult banded longhorns visit flowers, but this one is more a woodland species rather than woods edges, and its larvae live in decaying trees. Despite the superficial similarity, it is in a different genus.
Another longhorned beetle, Batyle suturalis, like so many adults in its family, feeds on pollen.
The larvae of this one most commonly bore oak and hickory trees.
The seven-spotted lady beetle was imported from Eurasia for aphid control.
Seven-spotted lady beetle. The odd number of spots comes about from the forward most spot, which forms from a half on each elytron.
The introduced lady beetles have proven to be problematic, their competitive and possibly predatory activity driving down our native lady beetle species.
The final two insects are Hymenoptera.
This little wasp, Euodynerus hidalgo, is a solitary species. The females nest in holes in wood or in the ground, partitioning them with fine soil and feeding their young with paralyzed caterpillars
I am accustomed to seeing cicada killers, which indeed capture cicadas to feed their young, in sand soil regions. Where these are finding soil soft enough to dig their nursery tunnels at Mayslake is a bit of a mystery.
Eastern cicada killer, the 200th insect species I have identified on the preserve.