Fall Bugs and a Lily Pad

There are still varieties of bugs around as we go into mid-October. One section of the blog is bugs on Lily Pads. I saw a water strider on one and took a photograph of it and then started looking at what else was there and was somewhat amazed. Some of the photographs are fuzzy as the Lily Pad was a ways from the pier. They are clear enough to give some idea of the diversity of creatures that populate the Lily Pads.

A Sumac Flea Beetle; I’ve never seen one before … and I only saw one on the day of this photograph and days since as I’ve looked in the same area but having seen any.
A large Milkweed Bug; this one was larger and brighter than the ones I’ve usually seen.
Looks like a small Carpenter Bee. It was early morning with dew covering flowers and anything sitting on them. Judging from the frayed ends of its wings, it has had a hard summer. I think it was alive but I didn’t try to make it move.
A Spotted Cucumber Beetle with some ants. The gooey stuff on the flower might be eggs.
Seek keeps saying this is a Crane Fly; however in the pictures of Crane Flies they don’t have the sharp proboscis. It is the size of a Crane Fly.
A Golden-Eyed Lacewing
Green Cone-headed Planthopper.
A Peppered Jumping Spider … or maybe a Zebra. I’ve seen there three times in the last several days. They are only about 1/4 inch end to end.
A Bold Jumping Spider with a fly. This was on a light stand in my back yard.
The Water Strider I started looking at.

From: https://blog.nature.org/science/2017/04/10/7-cool-facts-water-striders-skippers-pond-skaters-weird-nature/

That speed is essential for the strider’s most important task: snatching prey off the water’s surface. While striders don’t bite people, they are highly efficient predators. A water strider rapidly grabs a small insect with its front legs, then uses its mouthparts to pierce the prey’s body and suck out its juices.

They are particularly effective predators of mosquito larvae. As the Backyard Arthropod Project blog writes, “Since mosquito larvae breathe through a snorkel that they poke through the surface of the water, the water striders can grab them by the snorkel and eat them.

Recent research provides the answer. Water strider legs are covered in thousands of microscopic hairs scored with tiny groves. As reported in National Geographic, “These groves trap air, increasing water resistance of the water’s striders legs and overall buoyancy of the insect.”

The water skipper’s legs are so buoyant they can support fifteen times the insect’s weight without sinking. Even in a rainstorm, or in waves, the strider stays afloat.

If a water strider’s legs go underwater, it’s very difficult for them to push to the surface.

Their legs are more buoyant than even ducks’ feathers.

The ultra-floatation capabilities of water skipper legs may have applications for human use, such as self-cleaning surfaces and antidew materials.

Then a bunch of little flies.
larva of something, maybe the flies.
Another kind of fly. Above it is an insect trapped in water.
A tiny beetle.
This may be two bugs mating or one eating the other. There were a couple of other bugs on the Lily Pad but were too small for even a fuzzy photograph.

A lily Pad is a lively place if closely observed.

A Chipmunk eating the remains of a flower. While I watched it ate or stored in its cheeks 3 or 4 of these.
Some Fall colors but many trees are still mostly green.
One last bug … a Milkweed Bug. The point of interest is how its feed proboscis folds under its head
A flock of Bluebirds can through one day.
… and some trees are really into Fall.

Published by nature4507

I am a retired electrical engineer with many years of working on environmental controls for large buildings. I now spend many hours walking through beautiful parkland and taking photographs of the interesting and wondrous things I see.

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