Memes

  • Memes,  Outdoors,  Wildlife Wednesday

    Atala, Eumaeus atala | Wildlife Wednesday

    Over the last week or so I’ve been deep diving in our backup hard drives. The goal is to look for certain photos for my friend Eliana but as I’ve been sifting through photos I’m finding all sorts that we never edited—especially photos Chris took. Along the way I’m shuffling over files that I want to edit but I know I’ll be going back through the drives to pick out favorites and revisit some items. One of those sets were these handful of photos you see above of an atala butterfly and several larvae. We had seen them at Mounts Botanic Garden in West Palm Beach in March of 2008.…

  • Gardening,  Memes,  Outdoors,  Wildlife Wednesday

    Horned Passalus Beetle (Odontotaenius disjunctus) | Wildlife Wednesday

    Last week I was out watering the plants on the potting bench when I spotted a beetle coming out of the compost pile. I had a hunch it was a horned passalus beetle and so I took a few photos and threw it into iNaturalist just to verify—I was right! I’d come across one at Lake Livingston State Park a year or two ago so I was already familiar with the insect, which gave me my initial hunch. Horned passalus beetles feed on decaying wood so I suspect this one was actually ingesting the pieces of wood that used to form the perimeter of the compost bins. Those perimeter pieces…

  • Memes,  Outdoors,  Texas,  Travel & Places

    Echinacea purpurea | Flower Friday

    Every time I see coneflowers I am drawn to them. They are one of the long-standing bloomers in a garden and are tough plants and yet I cannot grow them at home unless they are inside our edible garden. You see, the deer love them, too. When we moved in to the house my mom divided some of hers to give to me and now those plants are long gone. I think we may have tried once or twice more before finally giving up on our chances of growing coneflowers out in the open. I am finally growing some inside the edible garden and they delight me every time I…

  • Memes,  Outdoors,  Texas,  Travel & Places,  Wildflowers

    Pearl Milkweed Vine, Matelea reticulata | (Wild)Flower Friday

    I’ve come to really appreciate the milkweed vine species, particularly the more common one in my area, anglepod, aka: Gonolobus suberosus. It grows freely in our yard and in the garden and even gets colonized by oleander aphids like other milkweed species do. Out in the Texas Hill Country, the pearl milkvine, Matelea reticulata, is more common and a delight to see when hiking in the limestone hills. Endemic to Texas and Mexico, you won’t find this species too far east of I-35, though the USDA Plants Database has one county in east Texas listed that the species is supposedly found–who knows!? iNaturalist only shows central and west Texas and…

  • Alaska,  Memes,  Outdoors,  Travel & Places,  Wildlife Wednesday

    Beluga Whales | Wildlife Wednesday

    Beluga whales—something that was definitely not on my agenda of things I anticipated seeing while in Alaska. Humpback whales, porpoises, sea otters, sea lions, seals, possibly orcas—those were all things that were on our radar and for the most part we came across all of them. The orcas were the only things in that list we didn’t see. When we disembarked our ship in Seward we opted to take the scenic Alaska Rail to the Anchorage airport where we would pick up a rental car. Instead of taking the highway between Seward and Anchorage via buses, the railway would be more scenic and offer up chances to sip coffee and…

  • Memes,  Wildlife Wednesday

    Zebra Longhorn Beetles (Typocerus zebra) | Wildlife Wednesday

    Back in April during our camping trip to Martin Creek Lake State Park near Henderson in East Texas, we hiked one afternoon on the Old Henderson Road Loop. I had thought about doing a separate trail write-up for that portion of the park but instead I think I’ll be sharing separate portions of the flora and fauna we saw there over the coming weeks. As we passed by a set of thistles one I noticed beetles crawling around on the flower heads and stopped to take a few photos. I think I interrupted some private bug moments going on but I took a few photos anyway! I really can’t find…

  • Memes,  Outdoors,  Wildlife Wednesday

    Chironomus sp. | Wildlife Wednesday

    The last camping trip we had in the spring was to Martin Creek Lake State Park near Kilgore. We had stopped here once on our way home from Caddo Lake when Forest was newly 2 for a short hike, to break up the long drive back to Houston with a then potty training toddler. Kilgore also happens to be near where my friend Michelle and her family used to live so every time we roll through there I think of her, even though she now lives an hour away from me in College Station. We found ourselves chilling at camp one of the afternoons and I was bound and determined…

  • Memes,  Wildlife Wednesday

    Who Cooks For You? Who Cooks For You All? | Wildlife Wednesday

    A week ago or so Forest and I were headed out to daycare and work down the driveway and I startled one of the local barred owls out of the swamp chestnut oak. It swooped low over the car and floated onto the electric pole on the property line. I stopped and got my phone out to take a few photos to show Forest since he was situated in a position that he couldn’t see the owl. Then, a few nights ago as I was working in the edible garden another owl (maybe the same owl) hooted from the woods down the way. It wasn’t terribly far as it was…

  • Gardening,  Memes,  Wildlife Wednesday

    Pollinator Friends | Wildlife Wednesday

    Last week I took out the macro lens to get a different viewpoint on the world in the garden. I wasn’t expecting to take photos of wildlife but once out in the edible garden where the full-sun was during the lunch hour, I came across several interesting individuals who got their photos captured. First, there was this Eastern Yellowjacket, Vespula maculifrons that someone on iNaturliast identifed as a queen. Pretty nifty! I’m not sure what she was searching for on the ground but that’s where she landed after buzzing a few flowers. And then I noticed one of our honeybees sipping the sweet nectar of the cilantro blossoms. This is…