What is your Favorite Lifer from this week?

Not sure what a “Lifer” is, but I’m assuming this will count: if the ID is correct, the only Bellied Ant Lion observation in New York outside of Long Island. 20 years of night lighting in the same location, and the only one I’ve ever seen, and at the end of the season to boot. “Never give up”



A lifer means the first time you see a particular species. Or in the looser context of this thread, the first time you submit an iNat observation of a particular species.

By either definition, that Bellied Ant Lion is indeed your lifer! Congrats!


Wow! Great finds!

How do you even photograph bats flying in the dark without a blur; I have tried and failed. I even tried night vision, however that did’nt really work. Does anyone here know of a trick to photographing flying nocturnal bats?


How do you even photograph bats flying in the dark

Some lighting, planning, pointing your camera in the direction of the general flight path, and lots of luck.


Got two amphibian lifers this week - the Cape Sand Frog and the critically endangered Micro Frog (second obs here)!

Cape Sand Frog - so named because they like to bury themselves in, well, sand during the day:

My favourite though are the aptly named Micro Frogs - tiny delicate things that are found in only a few spots in the coastal Western Cape and in only one small area in Cape Town:


Don’t think I posted them here yet - I finally got to see Spiranthes spiralis last week. They have no leaves this time of the year, just delicate stalks growing out of the ground with spirally white flowers!

Unfortunately they are the last orchids of the year here and generally signs of the end of flower time. Now long winter is coming with nothing to observe :cold_sweat:


I frequently go for lichens and mosses on winter hikes. There are always a good number of those to observe. There are winter keys for trees and shrubs and those winter scars and buds can look very interesting. Also, placing a bird feeder in good view from a window provides entertainment for the cats as well as observations on cold and snowy winter days when you don’t feel like even stepping out of the house.


This small Schinia was one of a dozen lifer Leps/new yard moths since Sunday https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/182474710


My first visit to Peppermint Park back in early spring was underwhelming – it’s basically just a little picnic lawn and a playground; the kind of place you take your kids to blow off extra energy. Not really a nature place. Still, knowing that just the other side of the chainlink fence is a railroad track, I figured I’d give it a try in late summer. The railroad grade is now a dense thicket of floral diversity. I was soon diverted by a porcelain vine, where an amazing array of Hymenoptera was visiting the flowers, including a tiny bumble bee no bigger than a honey bee, a blue-winged Scoliid wasp, and several other wasps which I could not identify.

On the leaves, though, was this:

Red-headed bush cricket. I’m not used to crickets being so colorful, or so high up off the ground. This is not only a lifer species for me, but a lifer family: Trigonidiidae. I had to “follow” this cricket around for several minutes as it moved from leaf to leaf before I manged to get two shots worth keeping. It had a habit of ducking to the underside of the leaf just as the camera finally focused.


I love red-headed bush crickets! When you see one, you’re bound to see several others! You’ll probably find more at that park in no time.

1 Like

My favorite that I have found this week is this Blunt Knapweed Flower Weevil I found on a rock with a Jumping Spider (supposedly Habronattus viridipes; is in need of an ID). I don’t know why, but it is so adorable to see this little weevil and spider hanging out on one rock.



I think Parastoids are super cool but hadn’t actually seen any before (that I knew of) so I was super thrilled to see these!


edit: never mind :( Just a lame house gecko, hahaha.


My favorite lifer from this week would have to be this Jimsonweed , this makes a nice edition to my lifer list from the nightshade family.


Technically a couple of weeks ago, but I was really excited to finally snap a photo of a Blue-winged Kookaburra. They’re fairly common, but it still felt like a win for me!


Favorite of the week definitely goes to this Inocybe; I found it while out on the ohio mushroom enthusiasts’ yearly group foray.

No clue the exact species but it was an absolutely gorgeous little mushroom and will be getting sequenced.

honorable mention goes to this weirdo cortinarius


The observation is from July, but I only got the photos uploaded this week:

Reakirt’s Blue. Not really uncommon around here, but the first that I can recall seeing, and the first I’ve ever photographed.


Uncommon doesn’t mean unexciting! That guy has some truly stunning iridescence


Truly! It’s like a mini-Morpho.