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.

5 comments:

  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.

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  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.
    See http://wightrambler.blogspot.com/2009/07/amusing-wasp.html

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

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

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  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..

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