Plants of New Jersey. Flora of Rutgers Campus. Weed by the CDL building.
Weed growing out of a planter. Spontaneous plant, not cultivated.
20.5 mm. Found in a wood chip pile. Sorry, not very good shots -- didn't have my flash diffuser.
13 mm long.
At 1.5 mm, my smallest bug posting yet. IDed on BugGuide (as usual with beetles, I spent way too much time looking for it, then finally gave up & left if for the experts).
By some miracle I managed to ID this rove beetle: looks like a match for Platydracus cinnamopterus, rufous morph. 12.7 mm. Found in a mulch pile. Held its tail up in the air at 90 degrees when disturbed. Sorry, not a great shot.
Images were collected for testing purposes by researchers at Rutger's University. Hosted by the Food Science Department.
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Dustywing: family Coniopterygidae, order Neuroptera; related to the lacewings. This tiny little thing (2.3 mm) landed on me at the bug light. I was totally clueless on this one. Finally, a BugGuide search on "tiny winged" turned up a single match.
Think these are banded killifish, Fundulus diaphanus. ~10 cm long. Shoaling in a shallow creekbed just off the Raritan Estuary. Very skittish -- the slightest move on the bank above & they went dashing off in all directions.
Was very proud that I managed to ID this one myself. Usually I have to go crawling to the experts on BugGuide for help with beetles.
Much darker than average for this species (exposure is pretty true in this shot), but pretty sure that's what it is. 6.8 mm long.
Only 4.0 mm long. NJ record on BugGuide.
7.4 mm. NJ record on BugGuide.
Mottled pink noctuid caterpillar with black spiracles & white tubercules, sparsely hairy. Found on wineberry (Rubus phoenicolasius), though not directly observed eating it. Mixed 2nd-growth deciduous canopy above; can post a couple of shots for tree ID if relevant. The Balabans think probably Heliothinae.
Female is 10 mm long. Found on raspberry (wineberry, Rubus phoenicolasius) fruit, which strongly suggests to me that these are among the little so-and-sos who sprinkle their unspeakably nasty fairy dust on a raspberry every so often.
Tribe Larrini; ~13 mm. Didn't realize til I saw the pics that she was bearing prey. Think it's a grasshopper nymph. She reappeared minus prey 3 min later, so presumably there's a burrow in the lawn (clayey soil). At one point she was chased by one of the much larger male cicada killer wasps that have been patrolling the area for emerging females (they nested here last year) & squabbling over the arena.
Was glad to be able to ID this one. I started off with no clue except "what does a black soldier fly mimic?" Checked by John Ascher.
We just started hearing the first cicadas of summer a few days ago – and the cicada killers are emerging. We had a colony of them digging burrows in our front lawn last year. It quickly went from "Oh, this is the coolest thing ever!" to "When are these pests going to stop killing the grass?" However, I didn’t manage to get any really good shots last year. This makes up for it.
Landed on me as I was walking down the sidewalk. 3.9 mm long.
Found this big fat beautiful dragonfly resting midmorning on the outside of my porch screen. Suburban neighborhood, 1/4 mi from the Raritan Estuary, 1/2 mi from the nearest pond, no wooded swamps anywhere in sight. IDed via wing venation by Ben Coulter on BugGuide. Harlequin Darner is more common in NJ; Taper-tailed is rare but present. Both are known from Middlesex County. Life family, as well as species. 1st shot was taken with fill flash; lateral view was taken in natural light. I then managed to coax her onto my finger. Unfortunately, I shadowed the bug with the camera in the only in-focus shot I got. And once carried out into the sun she soon took off. But at least that shot shows the wing venation.
I spotted this in flight, IDed it in flight(!) as a netwing, plucked it out of the air one-handed, & popped it in a container for a later photo shoot. It was amazingly docile -- guess it relies entirely on its aposematic coloration. I believe the extensive black on either side of the scutellum makes this C. discrepans rather than the much more common C. reticulatum -- NJ record on BugGuide.
A predatory stinkbug nymph, Podisus sp. Would seem to key out as P. serieventris; see www.biodiversitylibrary.org/page/16218387#page/102/mode/1up. But bugguide.net/node/view/546898 shows a counterexample. 9.4 mm.