Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Western Conifer Seed Bugs

On 11 November 2006 I found two Western Conifer Seed Bugs (Leptoglossus occidentalis), one inside the house and one outside (see photographs). They were tame and easily handled, and I was able to take many images.

Dwayne Sabine of the New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources (DNR) says this: “As near as I have been able to determine, the first report of Western Conifer-seed Bug in the province was on 12 July 1999 at the conifer seed orchards at Kingsclear [near Fredericton], and from Fredericton a few times thereafter (Danny O'Shea, DNR). Tony Thomas also found it in Fredericton, on October 27, 2004. It apparently showed up in Ontario in the mid-1980s and in Quebec in 2003. Its distribution and abundance in NB is probably unknown.”

The original range of Leptoglossus was confined to the western third of North America, but is now expanding its range eastward. The insect can be a nuisance because the adults enter buildings looking for a warm place to spend the winter. However, they will not feed or cause damage to fabrics, wood or anything else.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The case of the disappearing moth

This Large Yellow Underwing (Noctua pronoba) appeared on the wall under my porch light. I grabbed it and, while I held it on my hand, it disappeared before my eyes in a ghostly transformation! Pictures don't lie, do they? Now you can say you've seen a picture of a ghost moth!