What is your Favorite Lifer from this week?

Totally. Many different sizes as well.

It was a little more than a week ago, but during the Eriogonum Society field trips, I saw three annual buckwheats that were new to me: E. watsonii, E. nutans var. glabratum, and E. hookeri, all in the subgenus Ganysma. I was worried we wouldn’t see many annuals due to the drought but they are certainly tough little plants and were doing well. It seems almost magical that they can find enough water with their tiny roots to grow and bloom in mid-summer in a severe drought.


This beautiful tiny butterfly, Phyciodes phaon (Phaon Crescent)


There were quite a few of them and they were so small & fast-moving. Not only was I tickled to “discover” them, but later to see that the photo came out so clearly. I had no idea what it was & loved looking at all the crescents to find its exact match.
Those little stripes on the antennae! Those fantastic wings! What a sweet lifer for this week :o)


Weeks are flying by!
This week started with Drepanepteryx phalaenoides that for some reason has no English name!
Then 3 days ago I saw a fir number of Satin Beauty, could capture a single Riband Wave, V-Pug, Large Birch Bell, Olive Crescent and Amphipyra perflua that I saw today again.
This evening got a big surpise by meeting this cute male Nephrotoma cornicina.
There’re still some unided moths that are certainly new! (also saw some cool geometrid moths that hate me and noctuid moths that fly around flashlight, but don’t stay at one spot for more than 3 seconds)


How do you know that’s a male?

You should have seen the devastation caused by a certain species of tent caterpillars in a forest of quake aspen. The caterpillars stripped hundreds of trees naked, were crawling everywhere and a ton of them drowned in a pool. It was a scene from a science fiction movie. This is the pretty, yet voracious, caterpillar:

Week ending July 11: A strange looking fly with beefy third legs that seems to be a cross between a black fly and bumble bee.


Easiest part is genitals, females of Tipulomorpha are different and it’s easy too see even from very blurred pictures:


I was happy to see and get an identification for this Scoliid wasp this week (on the right, different species on the left). https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/86645529 They love sunflowers, are hairy enough to do some pollination, and good pest control.

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I was referring to the brown gray moth. Maybe the pattern on their wings are different.

Which moth are you talking about? I never called one a male in these posts, I’m confused, but depening on species it’s usually antennae structure and sometimes wing development.

I got mixed up. Never mind.

My favorite newbie for the week is this beautiful Spharagemon marmorata (Marbled Grasshopper)


I often drive by this vacant lot near the Gulf State Park. 50 years ago during summer vacations, my family would eat delicious fried chicken from a mom & pop place there. We’d order from the walk-up window, then eat at a picnic table.

Wondering what plants were growing there, I finally pulled out of traffic to “walk down memory lane.” At the end of my meandering, there was this exceptional encounter.

The color patterns were so stunning & it was so unusual, that I didn’t even know it was a grasshopper until computer vision told me so. Its distinctive legs just camouflaged right in. These were some happy moments! :o)


My highlight of this week has to be the vagrant Leopard Seal (!) that turned up at one of the many beaches of the Cape Peninsula! All the way from Antarctica! Went to see it yesterday (16 July 2021).

According to the Two Oceans Aquarium biologists who tagged it, there have been only about 10 records of leopards seals for South Africa. So glad I got to see it.


I took my first trip to the Trans Pecos so it’s a hard choice.

Trans pecos rat snake?

Varied bunting?

Banded gecko?

Lesser goldfinch?

Black headed grosbeak?

Tree lizard?


@bjoerns welcome to the forum :-)

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Wow, what a great thread
truly exciting and inspiring

last few weeks, nay months have been pretty amazing. Some lifers and once in a long while observations

This is definitely an electrifying lifer an electrophaes moth tiny shockingly beautiful

this sight of cuckolded grey-bushchat parents feeding a cuckoo baby has to rank as a top sighting lifer See pictures 2 and three

while not a lifer this is a lifer picture an indochinese leopard cat sitting out in the day calming watching the world and thinking we cannot see it

There are a tonne of moths that are new and exciting - too many to list out - so this truncated list is to share with you.

Edited to correct the link for the Indochinese Leopard Cat observation

just to say that only the electrophaes moth is from the past week

  • the rest and from other past weeks :-)

I did well this week, with several lifers, and at least one critter that was a new iNat record for NYC.

Today in Central Park I found a butterfly that was new to me, a Variegated Fritilliary:


And I also saw a highly colored lacewing larva, [Red-lipped Green Lacewing] which I thought was new to me, but it turns out I have seen it before a few times. (https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/59442) [Chrysoperla rufilabris]


And yesterday, in John Jay Park I found a small long-horned beetle that was new to me and a new iNat record for NYC, Sternidius alpha:



Your link for cat goes to cuckoo observation.

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Will list this week today as I’m gonna be busy tomorrow!
Plus, there were many interesting discoveries.
First is photolifer of Red-banded Yellowjacket which I saw a couple of times in 2014, but never since and had no photos.
Then very interesting young so called aestivating larvae of Periphyllus aceris.
Some of moths: July Highflyer Moth, Green Arches, Common Yellow Conch, Svensson’s Copper Underwing.
Inroduced fungi on introduced plant: Puccinia komarovii

Rarely observed bettle with 6 observations.
And something I wanted the most, new Nephratoma species: Nephrotoma scurra bright and very beautiful female.

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