Mariton: Summertime Insects
by Tim Burris, Preserve Manager. Photos by Carole Mebus.
Carole Mebus made a trip into the fields recently on a very hot morning. She was looking for butterflies on the Wild Bergamot (Monarda fistulosa). She saw butterflies, but she also came across some other interesting insects. I always look for Hummingbird Moths when the bergamot begins blooming, because that is when they show up in the fields and yard. Carole got two great photos of one.
The Cicadas are making noise in the trees again. These are the Annual Cicadas also known as the Dog Day Cicadas because they appear each summer during the dog days. Technically they are Periodical, because it takes 2 – 5 years for an individual to mature from egg to a nymph that eventually emerges from underground to shed its skin and become an adult. Even though they are cyclical, every year a brood shows up in great numbers. There are also different species in this group of Annual Cicadas. (We still have a few more years before the 17-Year Cicadas reappear in our area.) I have a tough time finding the winged adults, but it is easy to find the cast off shells of nymphs. Carole has a way with wildlife when she has a camera and she got a great photo of an adult Cicada.