Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sunbathing Survivors

With the first hard frosts probably no more than a couple of weeks away, insect numbers will soon plummet but for now, during what I believe has officially been declared an ‘Indian Summer’ by the Met Office, there are still quite a few around. This parasitic hymenopteran, which I think is a male Gasteruption jaculator, was feeding on a late-flowering hogweed umbel this afternoon. The crane fly (below) had arranged itself decorously over a yellowing Norway maple leaf, soaking up the weak afternoon sunlight.


  1. I think you're right about the frost Phil, soon be here.
    Great detail on these shots; and I love the way that Cranefly is spread across that leaf. Maximising the reflected sunlight I would think.

  2. Hi Phil. Great to see my all time favourite insect name back on the blogs - Gasteruption jaculator - you couldn't make it up could you!

    There was some interesting interaction over on Rambling Rob's blog a while back with links to a distribution map and some other photos. If your i/d is right you've just put it on the northern map, I think.

  3. Hi Keith, yes, the crane fly seems to fit the leaf perfectly...

  4. Hi Nyctalus, certainly is a memorable name. Will check out Rambling Rob's post... thanks for the reminder...

  5. Looking at it again closely Nyctalus, this may be another species of Gasteruption but it's somewhat the worse for wear .... its abdomen certainly looks very emaciated..