Wednesday, June 3, 2009
I found this critter dead in my driveway this morning. I couldn't discern what happened to it, but it was in pretty good shape so I brought it in to ID it. It's a red-spotted purple butterfly, which is or is not closely related to the white admiral, depending on what you read. At any rate, it is pretty, and I'm sorry that it is dead - I'd rather see it flying.
The first image is its ventral side, the part you see when the butterfly is at rest with its wings raised up above its back. The second image is the dorsal side, which you see when it is flying.
Also in the insect department, I got to watch an old log for a while today, that has an ant colony in it. I noticed it because there was sawdust around part of the log - a tree trunk, really, about two feet in diameter. When I looked more closely, I could see ants scurrying around. One ant was taking sawdust away from the log, one bit at a time - it didn't have any help, so it was looking at a BIG job. And when I watched one of the holes in the log - less than a quarter inch in diameter - I could see another ant come periodically to the hole and drop bits of sawdust out. Pretty cool, if you ask me. I'm guessing they were carpenter ants, but I'm not an entomologist.