Harvestmen, or harvest-spiders, are invertebrates in the order Opiliones. The very long-legged ones are sometimes called Daddy longlegs, but this common term is also used for crane flies, so its … Continue Reading Harvestmen – highly successful invertebrates with an ancient lineage
Marsh fritillaries, Euphydryas aurinia (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae), are one of my favourite butterflies. The beautiful tapestry of yellow, orange and black colours on their wings creates a stunningly attractive pattern, especially … Continue Reading Love is a carousel: courting Marsh fritillaries!
Ocelli (singular: ocellus) are simple eyes and are found on many different kinds of insects (such as bees, wasps, flies and dragonflies) and spiders. In adult insects, like the beautiful … Continue Reading Look into my ocelli! Simple eyes.
Capturing animal behaviour in a photograph (or even a video) is never easy. The wonderful natural history programmes we see on television, have often taken the film-makers months, if not … Continue Reading Capturing butterfly behaviour in the field
Coneheads (Conocephalinae) are not particularly common in the UK – there are three species in southern England – but head south, and they start to get much more abundant. In … Continue Reading Crunchy coneheads: edible insects
I was very pleased to come across a large group of Tawny Coster (Acraea terpsicore) butterflies when I was in Thailand last October. They were very active, and although I … Continue Reading Lock up your ladies! The Tawny Coster butterfly.
On a recent trip to northern Thailand (Chiang Dao) I came across these strange tubes coming out of the bottom of a tree. I knew at once that they were … Continue Reading Stingless bees: fascinating little builders!
These delightfully coloured, red, yellow and black Delias species – such as the Red-spot Jezebel (Delias descombesi descombesi) (above) – are widely thought to be poisonous, or at least unpalatable, … Continue Reading Jezebels with gorgeous warning colours
I have come across these Argiope orb-web spiders, a number of times, with their characteristic woven crosses on their webs. These ones photographed in northern Thailand, are either the Multi-coloured … Continue Reading Argiope cross-weaving spiders; stabilmenta and tiny males
I was very pleased to come across this butterfly, the common birdwing, recently. Although it is fairly common, I had not had a chance to try and photograph it before. … Continue Reading Yellow peril! Aposematic colouration in Troides butterflies
When landlords turn the drunken beeOut of the foxglove’s door,When butterflies renounce their drams,I shall but drink the more! (Poem 51: ‘I taste a liquor never brewed’ quoted from The Selected … Continue Reading Drunken Admirals!
In September this year, I was walking along a forest ride in Galicia, NW Spain, looking out for insects and butterflies. I particularly like photographing these beautiful dung beetles (Trypocopris … Continue Reading Who ate the dung beetles?
If anyone is looking for a new hobby, I can thoroughly recommend gerrid-watching! It might not be as popular as bird or butterfly watching, but observing the movements and behaviour … Continue Reading Gerrids bearing water mites
The Asian hornet arrived in Galicia (NW Spain) in 2012, and since then it has expanded and spread, becoming very common and highly visible. It is particularly attracted to the … Continue Reading Asian hornets feeding on tree sap
I came across this little female Holly blue (Celastrina argiolus) butterfly, depositing her eggs on bramble buds on 16th June 2019 in Galicia, Spain. It possible that she was a … Continue Reading Leave me alone! I’m laying an egg. Holly blue oviposition.
Dragonfly wings are thin and light and have a corrugated-like structure. There are lots of tiny cells between numerous veins and cross veins, which together form a stiff, yet relatively … Continue Reading Dragonfly wings: tried and tested over millennia!