Archive

Monthly Archives: August 2014

CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Jumping Spider (Phidippus clarus)

male. This particular species doesn’t make a standard web, but makes a house out of silk in the leaves of a plant in order to hide.

Learn: http://www.jumping-spiders.com/php/tax_drawings.php?id=3534

drawings: http://salticidae.org/salticid/diagnost/phidippu/clarus.htm

Shown on Florida Native Plant: SLENDER FLATTOP GOLDENROD (Euthamia caroliniana)

hiding:

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CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Barred Yellow Butterfly (Eurema daira) mating

a.k.a. Barred Sulphur This small butterfly has different color variations during wet and dry seasons. Show is the color during rainy season.

Range: http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/species/Eurema-daira

Larval host: Shyleaf (Aeschynomene americana), pencilflower (Stylosanthes biflora), and non-native perennial peanut (Arachis glabrata)

Learn: http://www.flmnh.ufl.edu/wildflower/completebutterflydata.asp?id=9

Shown on Florida Native Plant: Blackberry (Rubus sp.)

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CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Zarucco Duskywing Skipper Butterfly (Erynnis zarucco)

One of the Spread-wing Skippers (Pyrginae)

Range: SE USA (OK-NC-FL), Cuba, Hispaniola (source: http://butterfliesofamerica.com/L/erynnis_zarucco.htm)

Larval host: Woody legumes and Wild White Indigo (Baptisia alba), Blatterpod (Sesbania vesicaria); Milkpea (Galactia spp.)

Diet: Adults take nectar

Learn: http://bugguide.net/node/view/35352

Shown on Florida Native Plant: Spanish needles (Bidens alba)

Thanks to @AndyBugGuy for confirmation of identification

Bottom view:

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CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Metallic Wood-boring Beetle (Acmaeodera pulchella)

Common names: Flat-headed Bald Cypress Sapwood Borer
Yellow-marked Buprestid beetle

adults found on maple, persimmon, oak, and a variety of flowers (bugguide)

Range: http://www.fsca-dpi.org/Coleoptera/Mike/buprest.htm

Larval host: Hawthorn (Crataegus spp.), Locust (Gleditsia spp.), BALD-CYPRESS (Taxodium spp.) source: http://bugguide.net/node/view/2934

Larval host: Yucca sp. and Eriocaulon sp.
Learn: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00098813/00232/25?search=acmaeodera+pulchella

Hosts for Adults: Opuntia sp., primrose, dandelion, Rudbechia hurta, Ceanothus americanus, Asclepias tuberosa (Chamberlin 1926:33); composite flowers (Vogt 1949:195); Coreopsis palmata, Heliopsis helianthoides, Ratibida pinnata, Rudbeckia hirta (Westcott, et al. 1979:177); Carduus nutans, Erigeron sp., Hibiscus sp., Ludwigia alternifolia, Rudbeckia missouriensis, R. triloba, Ruellia strepens (Nelson 1987:58).
Larval host: Taxodium distichum (Chamberlin 1926:33).

Shown on Florida Native Plant: BLACKEYED SUSAN (Rudbeckia hirta)

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CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Bar-winged Skimmer Dragonfly (Libellula axilena)

New member of my buggy life list. Overall purple hue and face is lined with white.

Note the flange on the lower abdominal segment indicating this is female

Dragonflies are predatory in both adult and larval stages.

Range: http://www.npwrc.usgs.gov/resource/distr/insects/dfly/usa/368.htm

Learn: http://www.odonatacentral.org/index.php/FieldGuideAction.get/id/47119

Shown on wooden fence post

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CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Common Buckeye Butterfly (Junonia coenia)

Fly low to the ground and dont like people getting too close. A generalist as far as larval hosts

Range: http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/species/Junonia-coenia

Larval hosts include: Plantain (Plantago spp.), False Foxglove (Agalinis fasciculata), Florida Toadflax (Linaria floridana), Blueheart (Buchnera americana), Twinflower (Dyschoriste oblongifolia), Frogfruit (Phyla nodiflora)

Learn: https://www.floridamuseum.ufl.edu/wildflowers/butterfly/buckeye-common/

Shown on Florida Native Plant: Spanish Needles (Bidens alba)

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CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: American Bird Grasshopper (Schistocerca americana)

Robust grasshopper which flies when disturbed. Can be a pest, but there are natural enemies, including birds, fly larvae and blister beetles some of which paratize adults, while others eat the grasshopper eggs. Also killed by the fungus Entomophaga grylli.

This guy was hanging out in some Dogfennel.

Learn: http://www.entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/field/american_grasshopper.htm

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CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Southern Flannel Moth Caterpillar (Megalopyge opercularis)

Also known as Asp Caterpillar, Puss Caterpillar. ******spines are EXTREMELY VENOMOUS*******

Years back my laborador was stung and got pretty sick with vomiting, diarreah, disorientation, lethargy. Symptoms lasted approximately two days but he recovered without any lasting effects. Recommend relocating to areas not frequented by pets/humans.

Learn: http://web.archive.org/web/20100613163016/http://neuro.bcm.edu/eagleman/papers/Eagleman%20Asp%20Caterpillar%20Clinical%20Toxicology.pdf

The caterpillar itself looks like a soft and cuddily tuft of fur. Children should be made aware so they don’t pick up the “cute caterpillar”.

Does minimal damage to plants.

Range: http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/species/Megalopyge-opercularis

Larval host: multiple plants. I’ve found it on wax myrtle (bayberry); shown on Redbud.

Shown on Florida Native Plant: EASTERN REDBUD (Cercis canadensis)

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CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Io Moth Caterpillars (Automeris io)

Caterpillars Gregarious, but easily removed by hand picking *******protecting hand from stinging hairs*********. Adult moth is stunningly colorful.

Range: http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/species/Automeris-io

Larval host: multiple plants, shown on Redbud

Learn: entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/misc/io_moth.htm

Shown on Florida Native Plant: EASTERN REDBUD (Cercis canadensis)

early instar:

IOmothcaterpillarEarlyInstarAug2014

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