Nymph on a pod of Showy Milkweed.
Beautiful young snake; about 12".
I've never been able to get a good shot of these very shiny blue-black creatures; and these today aren't really what I'd hoped.
This individual was energetically digging into the loose soil here and there; at times entirely disappearing , then emerging to try another spot.
I believe it's a Blue Mud Dauber.
In the last two weeks the dry bottom of this small seasonal pond has been filled with a nearly confluent growth of this pungent herb: a nice surprise for the repeat visitor... A few plants showed a nice pink variation.
I should hesitate to make this call on this smallish Cercyonis, as C.sthenele is not much seen here--although it is listed on our counties' check list. But the field markings are right, so here goes...
Male. Compare with:http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/3858990
This nice meadow is rich in Katydids this week!
Much smaller than:http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/3794783
Different species? Sexually dimorphic? There were a lot of the smaller Pepsis, saw only a few of the giants.
Lots of Tarantula Hawks today; these visiting virtually very clump of narrow leaf milkweed I passed. Some of these were much bigger than the rest, and sported orange antennae.... made me wonder if there were two species.
In the last two images, the creature suddenly looked up at me( seemed to be looking at me) and straightened out it's antennae dramatically. Wonder why: would such a nightmare creature need a warning display?
Many of these flying on the hillside. I think it may be:http://mothphotographersgroup.msstate.edu/species.php?hodges=5455&state=CA