Readers’ wildlife photos

January 17, 2022 • 8:30 am

Our contributor today is Christopher Starr, a retired Professor of Entomology at the University of the West Indies in Trinidad and Tobago.  His photos span a range of taxa. Christopher’s captions are indented, and you can enlarge his photos by clicking on them. (See his first contribution here.) His captions and IDs are indented, and you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them.

In the early morning, before the sun got hot, I consistently saw bright red velvet mites (Trombiculiidae) walking in the open on a sandy surface.  They were large (about the size of a raisin), soft-bodied and very conspicuous, yet the abundant agamid lizards were not eating them.  Wondering if they were protected by defensive chemicals, I tasted one, and sure enough.  It was so dreadfully bitter that I couldn’t bring myself to try another, so my sample size remains at one.  Ghana.

We are all familiar with mimicry, in which the mimic gains an advantage when the predator mistakes it for something else: a type-1 error.  Those of us with an eye for mimicry sometimes make a type-2 error by mistakenly seeing a deception where there is none.  Coming upon this dried, twisted vine, my reaction was “Aha, a snake camouflaged as a vine.”   Georgia.

The pachyrhychine weevils are a distinctive, extremely hard-bodied group almost entirely restricted to the Philippines and the Pacific islands fringing Taiwan. Pachyrhynchus tobafolius (first photo) is sympatric with an unidentified otiorhychine weevil (second photo), which has the appearance of being one of its mimics.

Although it is highly venomous, the fer-de-lance, Bothrops asper, avoids contact with humans and other large animals.  Note the effective camouflage of this one, which was lying immobile against a backdrop of vegetation. Trinidad.

This male Anolis lizard in the process of shedding his skin ate the old skin as it came loose.  Costa Rica.

Trinidad’s Pitch Lake is analogous to the La Brea Tar Pits in California.  Unlike La Brea, the Pitch Lake has not been mined for fossils, which it very likely contains.  This caiman was trapped in the surface tar and gradually sinking into it, possibly on its way to becoming a fossil.  Trinidad.

JAC: I’ve inserted a 2016 photo of Pitch Lake taken from Wikipedia:

A primary defensive feature is one that operates all the time, while a secondary defensive feature comes into play only when a threat is perceived.  Tortoises present my favorite example of a primary defense enhanced by a secondary defense.  The hard shell is always present, but when the tortoise is threatened it withdraws its head and feet tightly inside the shell. Mexico.

This newly-hatched Gonnatodes gecko was fully active from the moment it broke out of its shell.  Trinidad.

In studying the responses of various orb-weaving spiders to a simulated predatory disturbance, I found that common cross spiderAraneus diadematus, has one that I have not seen in any other. In the early stages of the disturbance, the spider raises its forelegs as if to parry the intruder.  Italy.

In some parts of its range, the large pink-toed tarantula, Avicularia avicularia, is common in rural buildings, including in my house.  I have often seen visitors startled and even fearful when encountering one fo these, but I like having them around. Trinidad.

I have usually found this Hersilia sp. building its web on the surface of tree trunks and sitting in the middle of it, flattened and well camouflaged.  Philippines.

Cnidoscolus urensl is commonly known as “burn bush” or “mala mujer” on account of the highly urticating needles on its leaves, stems and fruits.  Where this plant is very abundant, we found the orb-weaving spider Argiope argentata preferentially basing its web on this plan. St Vincent & the Grenadines.

This Myrmarachne sp. [JAC: note that this is a spider] has the appearance of a specific Batesian mimic of a Crematogaster ant that is abundant in its habitat. Taiwan.

Readers’ wildlife photos

January 12, 2022 • 8:30 am

Today we have a rarity: photos of social insects. Our contributor is Christopher Starr, a retired Professor of Entomology at the University of the West Indies in Trinidad & Tobago.  His captions are indented, and you can enlarge his photos by clicking on them.

Apoica flavissimais is a member of a small genus of neotropical wasps distinguished by being nocturnal.  During the day they are almost always to be found resting on the nest in this formation.  Brazil.

The neotropical Angiopolybia pallensis is the commonest social wasp in some parts of its broad range.  Although it shows high alertness when approached and has a moderately painful sting, it is surprisingly slow to fly off the nest and attack.  Trinidad.

Members of the genus Miscyocyttarus show a great diversity of nest structure. An extreme nest form is seen in M. punctatus, in which each cell is based on the lip of the previous cell.  This is expensive in building material, but it presumably allows the wasps to camouflage the nest as a vine against visually-searching predators.  Trinidad.

Parachartergus colobopterusis notoriously docile and can only with difficulty be provoked to a stinging attack.  Note that I have broken off the stick on which this nest is based and am holding it in my hand.  It’s sting is ostensibly quite mild.  Venezuela.

No one has yet found a physical character to distinguish the sympatric Mischocyttarus alfkeni and M. baconi, yet they are easily separated by their nests, a good example of ethospecies.  The use of genetic characters confirms that they are two different species.  Trinidad.

M. alfkeni:


M. baconi:

Parachartergus fraternus makes a very fine-textured nest from plant hairs.  When a colony absconds the workers commonly return to the old nest over several days to salvage the valuable carton from the nest envelope.  In contrast to P. colobopterus, this wasp readily attacks when disturbed and delivers a painful sting.  Trinidad.

All studied Polistes spp. display a stereotyped set of visual threats when the colony is disturbed.  This Polistes exclamans has the forelegs raised and vibrating side to side, the wings raised and fluttering at low amplitude, and the abdomen bent and probing in a stinging motion.  Georgia.


Social wasps forage readily for water.  This P. dominula has landed on the surface of a stagnant pond and is drinking from it.  The abundance of algae in the water presumably aids her in standing on the surface without sinking.  Italy.

The conspicuous laminae descending from the envelope of this Polybia scutellaris nest may serve as drip tips that conduct rain water rapidly off the surface.  Costa Rica.

Where palms with spiny trunks are abundant, Mischocyttarus labiatus preferentially bases its nests at the tips of such spines.  This presumably serves a defensive function against ants, which would have to walk up a great many spines in searching for any given wasp colony.  Note also the nest’s extremely long, narrow petiole.  Costa Rica.

Readers’ wildlife photos

January 10, 2022 • 8:30 am

Today’s photos, a mixed bag of taxa, come from reader Chris Taylor in Australia (that almost rhymes!).  His notes and IDs are indented, and you can enlarge his photos by clicking on them.

Another set of photos:  all were taken at home on my property outside Canberra.

Black Fronted DotterelElseyornis melanops, at the edge of the dam next to the house.  These are quite common visitors, and have even tried to breed here. Unfortunately, their nest attempts have not met with success.

An Eastern Grey KangarooMacropus giganteus, on the dam above the house just before dawn.  Very common here; there are mobs of up to 50 that move between the forest reserves up above our house and the paddocks in the valley.

An Echidna, Tachyglossus aculeatus, ambling across one of the paddocks.

Eastern Long-necked TurtleChelodina longicollis. These are quite common in the farm dams and waterways around here.  Unfortunately, many fall victim to cars as they try to cross the roads – they just stop walking and retreat into their shell as a car approaches, with the inevitable result.

We quite often see snakes here.  The most venomous are the Brown snake, and the Red-bellied Black Snake, Pseudechis porphyriacus, pictured here. The Brown is reputed to have the third or fourth most potent venom of any snake, while the Red-belly comes in rather further down.  It is said that the red-belly will eat brown snakes, and so when they are around, brown snakes will not be a problem.  Just how truthful that is I can’t say, but the years when the red-belly was here we didn’t see a single brown.

A Jewel Beetle, Scutiphora pedicellata:

Welcome Swallows, Hirundo neoxena. The first photo is of a swallow nest and fledgeling in the roof of one of the sheds above where we parked our vehicles. So during the time when the young birds were still in the nest, we had to clean the car windows every time we wanted to drive out!

The second photo is of the swallows bathing in the dam below the house.  They would fly around, then almost hover for a moment, before dipping their breasts into the water.

Two photos of Willie Wagtails (Rhipidura leucophrys). A very common bird, and here all year.  First we see a bird coming in to land on a fence post.  The second is one of a nest.  This is constructed from spider web, and this nest was particularly cozy as it was luxuriously lined with Alpaca fleece that the birds had been able to gather from bits left in the paddock after we had shorn our animals!

Readers’ wildlife photos

January 5, 2022 • 8:30 am

Thanks to those who sent in photos when I importuned the readers. There will always be a need for more. . .

Today’s batch comes from regular Mark Sturtevant, who provides the IDs and narrative. You can enlarge Mark’s photos by clicking on them.

These pictures were taken a couple summers ago in area parks in Michigan, which is where I live.

To begin, can readers spot the moth in this picture? You may have to enlarge the photo to help find it, but it is in plain sight. Only please do not give away the location! Let others have fun trying to find it. A different picture of the same moth is farther down.

Next is a pair of young Promethea moth larvae (Callosamia promethea). I’ve been finding good numbers of these giant silk moth caterpillars, although the youngsters shown here were only about the size of rice grains. If they survive, they will grow into large and strikingly beautiful caterpillars, and the adults are one of our largest moths. You can see pictures of these stages at the link.

Next are some damselflies. Damselflies that are called “bluets” belong to a few very large genera of narrow-winged damselflies, but not all bluets are blue, and not all blue damselflies are bluets. So when I take a picture of a narrow-winged damselfly, I usually don’t know if it’s a bluet or something else until after a long struggle with various field guides. Fortunately, I have an online friend who is quite good at these things, and he has helped me out a lot. So… this first one is the taiga bluet (Coenagrion resolutum), and at least it is sort of blue.

Following that is a blue-ringed dancer (Argia sedula), which is not a bluet even though it looks like it should be. Narrow-winged damselflies are tricky!

Next up is a stilt-legged fly (Rainieria antennaepes). These are always entertaining to watch as they march up and down on their leaf (they are reluctant to leave it), waving their cute little white feet out in front of them. This display is thought to signal to their kind, and maybe to also mimic the various ichneumon wasps that have white banded antennae. I always get a kick out of just watching these flies.

This other fly is one of our marsh fliesEuthycera arcuata. I don’t see this species very often, so I was very glad to find one that stuck around for pictures. A thing I’d recently learned about marsh flies is that their larvae prey on snails.

The katydid nymph shown in the next picture is a round-headed katydid (Amblycorypha sp.). These don’t occur in my area, but about two hours’ drive south of me they become pretty common along woodland trails. I will have pictures of adults to show later. These large and beautiful insects are distinctly chill about being approached and closely photographed.

Next is a lean looking male harvestmanLeiobunum calcar, and the picture is a stack from a few hand held pictures. Photography for focus stacking does not always need to be a fussy procedure with lots of pictures and perfect stillness. One can just try to hold still, and move the focus ring on the lens a smidge for each picture. If there are some artifacts from parallax shifts (there certainly was with this one), then that often can be fixed later in Photoshop or whatever.

And finally, where is the same moth shown in the first picture, although this picture is definitely “over-cooked” in post-processing. It is a walnut sphinx mothAmorpha juglandis. I would have never seen it on the forest floor, which is where I found it, except that it was moving!

Thanks for looking! 

Readers’ wildlife photos

December 27, 2021 • 9:00 am

As E. O. Wilson died yesterday, I thought today would be an appropriate day to post photos of ants, his favorite research subject. Fortunately, reader Tony Eales from Queensland sent a batch of ant photos recently (there are two ant-mimicking spiders as well), and here they are. The captions and ID’s are Tony’s, and you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them:

I don’t know about other places in the world, but the leaf litter in Australia is the kingdom of ants. No matter where I go there are probably two or more Polyrhachis species, Iridomyrmex and Crematogaster everywhere you look along with tiny Pheidole sp. and even smaller species, orders of magnitude tinier than the large Polyrharchis.

Polyrhachis brisbanensis:

Iridomymex purpureus:

Crematogaster sp.:

Pheidole sp. major:

Pheidole sp. minor worker:

It takes a little courage to lie down among all these ants crawling everywhere but none of the species above have ever caused me more than a mild inconvenience (as long as you aren’t near an Iridomyrmex purpureus nest. They don’t have a sting but the ants are large, their colonies are huge and they swarm aggressively)

However, you do need to watch out for Bull Ants.

In the course of testing the pain induced by hymenopteran stings for his famous Sting Pain Index, Justin Schmidt tried a few species of Myrmecia AKA Bull Ants. He gave the ratings as follows

Myrmecia simillma – 1.5 – Intense, ripping, and sharp. The dog’s tooth found its mark.

Myrmecia gulosa – 1.5 – A sneaky, unassuming ache. Like a brightly colored LEGO, charming till it’s lodged in the arch of your foot in the dark.

Myrmecia rufinodis – 1.5 – Shockingly sharp. A scalpel just lanced your palm.

Myrmecia pilosula – 2 – The oven mitt had a hole in it when you pulled the cookies out of the oven. (of note, M. pilosula is the only ant species recorded to have killed humans)

All of these species are southeastern species and do not occur where I am. However, I have no desire to test the species living in my state of Queensland and see how they rate.

Happily, Myrmecia are never the most common species where I am, and in most open forest environments, they are quite rare.

I did come across a newly mated queen Myrmecia queenslandica excavating its first nesting chamber:

These ants are prized by ant keepers but I left her to her task. The only queens I collect are ones that have found themselves in a poor environment like indoors.

It can often be difficult to tell if a given individual is a queen. With Myrmecia the best way to tell is to look for wing scars on the back.

While these large Myrmecia are rare, the species I am most cautious about are ridiculously common. Rhytidoponera metallica are, in the area I live, the most widespread and common species. They are in every well curated lawn and every forest floor, every area of disturbed bare earth and every remote national park. The only place I don’t see them is coastal dunes and closed rainforest.

Schmidt also tested these ants

Rhytidoponera metallica – 2 – Deceptively painful. Like biting into a green bell pepper to find it is a habanero chili.

They aren’t particularly aggressive but being small and ubiquitous it is easy get one trapped between your toes or in your clothes or inadvertently sit on a nest.

They are very pretty ants up close, though:

There are several species of velvet ant (wingless female wasps in the family Mutilidae) that appear to be mimicking R. metallica. Since mutilids have their own fearsome reputation for stinging, I presume this is a case of Müllerian mimicry.

Velvet ant Ephutomorpha sp.:

And a number of species of stingless, but still chemically defended, ants also appear to be mimicking R. metallica.

Dolichoderus scrobiculatus:

Polyrhachis hookeri:

A couple of ground-dwelling spiders have also gone for R. metallica mimicry

Poecilipta sp.:

Adoxotoma nitida:

Readers’ wildlife photos

December 20, 2021 • 8:30 am

Mark Sturtevant sent me these photos last October, and I’ve been remiss in not posting them. (BTW, readers, how about giving yours truly a gift of photos for the site as a Coynezaa present?)  Mark’s captions and IDs are indented, and you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them.

Here are more pictures of arthropods. Well, mostly arthropods.

Deep in a remote forest, a strange but also new kind of moth suddenly dropped onto a leaf in front of me. This is the dark-spotted palthisPalthis angulalis.

Next up is a broad-headed bug nymph (Alydus eurinus). These Hemipterans are seed feeders, but the nymphs are great ant mimics. In keeping with that, they are also very erratic and darty in their movements. Different species resemble different ant models. This one looks like a common species of carpenter ant.

Here is a differential grasshopper nymph, Melanoplus differentialis. Very common and ordinary, although I really like photographing grasshoppers.

The tiny insect shown next is a male minnow mayfly (Callibaetis sp.), with its very weird compound eyes that are thought to be used to look for females. The picture is focus stacked from pictures taken by hand on the dining room table. 

The caterpillar shown next is kind of beautiful, but it is not welcome! This is the larva of the Lymantria dispar, a.k.a. the gypsy moth (although that common name is now being retired, and I have not seen a new name for it). Introduced into this country in the 1800s, it has been slowly migrating westward. I began to see them a couple years ago, and now they are getting obnoxiously common. The reason they are bad news is because gypsy moth caterpillars can become highly numerous at times, and do severe damage to a wide range of hardwood tree species on which they feed. I have more pictures of their different life stages to share later (unfortunately).

Continuing with caterpillars, here is a tiny and rather weird Geometrid larva that is called the horned spanworm (Nematocampa resistaria).

One day I foolishly waded out into a sandy river with the “big camera” to take this rather atmospheric picture of bluet damselflies. Damselflies in this group are tricky to identify, but it looks like a mixed group here. I’ve tentatively identified the three in the middle to be azure blueets (Enallagma aspersum), and the ones on the far left and right as skimming bluets (E. geminatum). There is a tiny squabble going on at far right, where a male skimming bluet has landed behind a mated female azure bluet who is being guarded by her mate. The female is saying “buzz off!” to the cheeky male by beating her wings and arching her abdomen.

The spider shown in the next picture came as a present to be unwrapped. There was this leaf, neatly woven together with silk into a distinct ball. I carry scissors with me, and this was used to carefully cut open the leaf to reveal the darker form of one of our nursery web spiders (Pisaurina mira) with a freshly made egg sac. Not nearly as big as the other species I see around here, which is scary big, but this one had a leg span over two inches. I am holding the leaf in my hand, knowing that she will be very reluctant to run out of her retreat.

I later carefully fastened the leaf deep into a bush so that the budding family was well protected.

And finally, deep in a remote forest, I came across a creepy kind of fungus that is appropriately known as “dead man’s fingers” (Xylaria polymorpha). Every time I see these, I am reminded of a story related to me about some parents who were on a nature hike with their young daughter. They came across this fungus protruding from the ground at the daughters’ feet, and so they excitedly pointed it out and said “Oh, look! Dead man’s fingers!” It did not go over well.

Readers’ wildlife photos

December 17, 2021 • 8:15 am

Our tank is diminishing, so please think of this website when you ponder your photos. In other words, SEND ‘EM IN.

Today we have photos of several species from Emilio D’alise. I’ve indented his captions, and you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them.

Oleander hawk-moth (Daphnis nerii)

This moth was photographed while it sat just under the handle of our screen door in Kailua Kona, Hawaiʻi. It was there when we left in the morning, and was still there when we returned in the late afternoon.

That is the oleander hawk-moth is also known as the army green moth because of the camouflage-like coloring. There are a few mainland moths that are similar in color but not shape, and a few that are similar in shape but not color. It’s native of African and Asia, but it was introduced in Hawaiʻi in the 1970’s to control oleander plants and to pollinate certain endangered plants. It’s also seen in certain parts of Europe, England, and as far north as Scotland (although rare).

It’s said to thrive in warm climate dense lush green foliage so I’m not sure how England and Scotland qualify—but there you have it.

Glover’s Silk Moth (Hyalophora columbia gloveri, or Hyalophora gloveri)

This particular moth was photographed in Woodland Park, CO.

Glover’s Silk moth looks a lot like the Cecropia Moth (also known as the Robin moth), with subtle differences between the two. I found conflicting sources as to whether this moth is itself a Hyalophora subspecies, or a subspecies of the  Hyalophora columbia (Columbia Silk Moth).

Regardless, this is one striking moth with a wingspan of up to 5″. This particular specimen was on the ground on a sidewalk outside the office where I was working, and I was concerned it would get trampled. It turns out these moths — and maybe all moths — are fairly tolerant of people trying to get them to move. It did eventually move after I stopped trying to get it to move.  Apparently, moths can be as obstinate as people.

Hawaiʻian Garden Spider (Argiope appensa)

Despite the number of these spiders I saw, I didn’t get many good photos. That’s because vegetation grows vigorously in Hawaiʻi and many of the specimens I saw were out of my reach. Gardens and resort grounds tend to be trimmed and maintained regularly so there’s not as much opportunity to see these in more accessible environments. They’re probably around and near people’s homes, but I try not to trespass just for the sake of a photo. This photo was taken at a state park and it shows the underside of the spider (I couldn’t get to the other side).

The females are said to reach 2.5 inches in size, but I remember them looking bigger. Their webs have a distinctive zig-zag pattern which some believe functions as a warning to birds so that the web doesn’t get damaged. Others theorize it stabilizes the web during windy conditions.

I remember reading that these spiders destroy and recreate their web each night, but I’m not reading that in any of my current resources, so I don’t know if it’s a false memory I’m conflating with the behavior of some other spider.

White-lined Sphinx Moth (Hyles lineata)

I’ve photographed these in Colorado many years ago, and now in Illinois. This past September, this White-lined Sphinx Moth visited our patio just before sunset one evening. Sometimes also referred to as the Hummingbird Moth, they’re supposed to be numerous, but this was the first specimen I’ve seen since we moved to Illinois nearly three years ago.

I snapped something like 60 or 70 photos but I won’t bore people with that many (but it was difficult paring down). Notice how, regardless of its position, it keeps its eyes on me … er … rather, my camera.

White-lined Spinx Moth photos:


In early October, I was lucky enough to capture video of another WLS moth — or possibly the same one — feeding on the flowers on our front steps.

Here’s a video from Vimeo:


Praying Mantis or Mantid (f.Mantidae)

A Praying Mantis, or praying mantid, is the common name for an insect of the order Mantodea. These insects are notorious predators and their name is sometime mistakenly spelled ‘Preying Mantis’ which is incorrect. They are in fact named for the typical ‘prayer-like’ stance. There are approximately 2,000 mantid species worldwide. The majority are found in Asia. About 20 species are native to the USA.

These three specimen were photographed in Colorado, Hawaiʻi, and Illinois.

The first, from Colorado, was photographed at night and the photos were rotated 90° to facilitate viewing.

The second was photographed in Hawaiʻi and looks to be a juvenile. Hawaiʻi should be a paradise for these predators because everywhere you look, you see bugs.

The last one is from my yard and it hung around there for a few weeks. See if you can spot it . . .

Here’s a close-up:

It blends in amazingly well . . . except that’s not where it usually sat . . .

Yup, that’s a green mantis on one of my hummingbird feeders, hiding in plain sight. I would move it whenever I needed to change the sugar water and clean the feeder. It seems to me it would have been more successful hunting on the tree where I put it, but I’ll defer to its hunting expertise.

Readers’ wildlife photos

December 11, 2021 • 8:00 am

Send in your photos, please; the holidays will soon be on, and nobody will be reading or sending. Thanks!

Today’s photos, a great batch, come from regular Tony Eales from Queensland. His notes are indented, and you can enlarge his photos by clicking on them.

A grab bag of rainforest finds.  I’ve been getting seriously addicted to doing night walks in the local rainforest. There’s a lot of different species out compared with the day, and different activities are going on.
Like cicadas emerging from their pupal shells, this one is a Green Grocer (Cyclochila australasiae). One of the favourite photos I’ve ever taken.

I encountered this mantidfly (Ditaxis biseriata) wandering about on a huge tree fallen limb. The ones I’ve found in the rainforest in the day have flown off quickly but this one seemed very interested in my lights.

A lot of sex seems to happen at night as well. Who would have thought that cockroach sex would be so weirdly beautiful? These are in the family Ectobiidae, but more than that I do not know.

There’s a few species I only ever see at night, like this huntsman (Heteropoda hillerae):

And these harvestmen, probably an undescribed Neopantopsalis species:

. . . and these weird crickets in the ‘Cave Weta’ family Macropathinae:

During the day these spiders (Genus Namandia in the family Desidae) stay deep in their messy cobweb retreats in the hollows and forks of trees. But at night they run out and grab anything walking around on the trunk of the trees. This hairy caterpillar’s spines were apparently no defence.

The lower trunks of the trees are full of these prehistoric looking pygmy grasshoppers (Tetrigidae). They are both armoured and camouflaged and difficult to photograph well, but worth the effort. This one is  Vingselina crassa. [JAC: Look at those hoppers!]

Not just invertebrates come out at night but also vertebrates and normally shy frogs are rather easy to approach and photograph at night time. This one is the Dainty Tree Frog, Ranoidea gracilenta, a fairly common frog but one I never tire of photographing.

Readers’ wildlife photos

November 30, 2021 • 8:00 am

Reader Chris Taylor sent us some lovely photos of moths and butterflies, most from Australia. His captions and IDs are indented, and you can enlarge his photos by clicking on them.

I’ve dug out some lepidoptera photos for your wildlife photos. These have been taken in many places over a long period of time.  They are mostly Australian, but a couple of ringers crept in there too .I know very little about any of them, other than the identification and place where the photo was taken.

Danaus plexippus, Monarch, Nelson New Zealand:

Dasypodia selenophora, Southern Old Lady Moth, Burra NSW:

Delias nigrina, Black Jezebel, North Richmond NSW:

Euploea core, Common Crow, Burra NSW:

Graphium macleayanum, Macleay Swallowtail, Jindabyne NSW:

Unidentified Hawk moth, Burra NSW:

Junonia villida, Meadow Argus, Tallawang, NSW:

Orgyia anartoides, Tussock moth caterpillar, Atherton Tablelands QLD:

Papilio anactus, Dainty Swallowtail, North Richmond NSW:

Pararge aegeria, Speckled Wood, Stalybridge UK:

Unidentified caterpillar,  North Richmond NSW:

Vanessa itea, Yellow Admiral, Bundanoon NSW:

Vanessa kershawi, Australian Painted Lady, Bilpin NSW:

Readers’ wildlife photos

November 26, 2021 • 8:00 am

Here’s the first installment of rainforest photos from reader Athayde Tonhasca Júnior.  Click on the photos to enlarge them, and his notes and IDs are indented:

You asked for readers’ photos, so here’s a tour through the Brazilian Atlantic Forest.


Access road:

Bad-tempered toad:

Black-faced hawk (Leucopternis melanops):

Bothrops sp. (fer-de-lance). Keep your distance!


Another bromeliad:

Cheeky lizard:



Fungus 1:

Fungus 2:

Fungus 3: