What is your Favorite Lifer from this week?

Yesterday I found a beautiful moth during my nightly moth-walk - and it is even an iNat first! :-)


https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/205306588

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I am happy to share one that was only identified this week, from last year. Well, actually 11 observations of the same species of black fly: https://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/230962

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I went to find an Exobasidium (fungal) gall on an azalea after seeing it posted on iNat by a couple other people:
March 27th, March 30th, April 3rd (my obs)
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I poked around in the bushes and found some more: 2nd, 3rd, 4th
I have identified them as Exobasidium discoideum based on the shape and host species, Rhododendron viscosum. They weren’t growing from the underside of a leaf as in the species description, but maybe the location is variable?

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Mine is honestly just this Red Admiral https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/205747035. Super common butterfly, but it’s the first adult Lepidopteran I’ve seen this year, and this is the first year I’ve become interested in native plants, insects, and ecology in general.

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First time I am able to post a lifer, as I uploaded rather quick this time. After a longer period of not observing much, I was finally able again to go on a small trip

I rarely have plants on my “must see”-list, but this one is very iconic for Colombia, so I wanted to go see the larges palm trees of the world of course, which can grow up to 60 m high


https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/206072689

Once in that area I explored a park nearby in which other iNatters had observed Iguanas before… did not find Iguanas (which would not have been lifers anyways) but was very happe to observe a native mammal instead… which does not happen too often, if you are not visiting the jungley parts of the country


https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/206076699

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I took a trip to Crete and saw 40+ orchid species… they are all my favorite lifers and I can’t pick any single one. So instead my non-orchid lifer were these Tulipa cretica which are endemic to Crete. Oh and these Zerynthia cretica which are also endemic to Crete.

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Palm warbler!

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It was a fairly warm night yesterday so I decided to put out the moth trap and see if I’d get any new species apart from the regular quakers and such that visit the trap and ended up with this Silver cloud moth inside. This species isn’t particularly common and is quite local in the UK so it was quite a pleasant find.

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This week I traveled for the eclipse, this led to me doing a lot of observing near Watertown NY. This led me to getting several new lifers, my favorite would probably have to be this Siberian Squill

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I found my first Triungulins!!! SUPER excited to see them, as I didn’t even know what they were prior to these photos. Thought it was some kind of louse or something!

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http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/206713288

It’s not exactly as colorful or flashy as some other species posted in this thread but it’s a lifer nonetheless! It’s called Euglesa compressa and it’s a tiny species of freshwater pea clam (this valve is only 3mm). It only has 4 other observations on iNaturalist!

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I’ve always wanted to get a decent macro shot of a cuckoo wasp, as they are, IMO, among the most beautiful insects.
Yesterday it finally happened: Chrysura sp. observation

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I have NEVER seen any kingfishers in MA. I must get unlucky/look in the wrong places. However, in the past 2 days, I have seen 5. Here’s the best observation!
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/207145728

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I keep finding new flies in my backyard! This is the 21st species.


https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/206095404
I’m honestly shocked. 21 species of fly! My whole property is only like 50ft by 100ft. I am now considering this a challenge. I will find all the flies.

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Well then, I hope you are out in the field right now because with >100,000 species of fly (according to the Smithsonian), you really have no time to waste! :P

Seriously though, flies can be really cool and, personally, they are among my favourite insects to take photos of because you can get quite close before they get spooked. And the diversity is amazing. There are very pretty ones (Syrphidae, Platypezidae, Tephritidae) and others that look like their spaceship has crashed and they now plan to take over Earth (Conopidae). :D

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Last night on my moth-walk I saw a strange tiny beetle. It might be Mezium affine. And the photo is even reasonably good.

https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/207287240

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I just saw my first Spangled Skimmer!


https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/207295524
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/207295524

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lollll I guess I will be camped out in my backyard for the foreseeable future. Let me go set up my tent. It’s a good thing the wifi reaches out there…

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189 Diptera species on my 100 ft by 120 ft suburban property (with some found indoors). 29 species of bee flies and 23 species of hover flies are one of the benefits of a thriving pollinator garden.

My lifer this week was an invasive grass :slightly_frowning_face: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/207266739. Swallowtail flew by my window as I’m typing this, so I should have more fun spring observations soon!

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I regret that this thing is not widely sold around the world. A wonderful plant.