Sightings – Insects and Spiders

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/13/13

Observation Time: 12:05 p.m.

Observation Location: Soccer parking area by Gavins Pond

Common Name: Dronefly

Scientific Name: Eristalis tenax

Comments: This fly looks like a drone honeybee—hence the name.

More Information: TrekNature

Dronefly

Observer: Josh Simons

Observation Date: 7/16/11

Observation Time: 3:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill area

Common Name: Dun Skipper

Scientific Name: Euphyes vestris

More Information: Wisconsin Butterflies

Dun Skipper

Dun Skipper

Dun Skipper

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/9/11

Observation Time: 3:40 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: Dusted Skipper Butterfly

Scientific Name: Atrytonopsis hianna

More Information: BugGuide

Dusted Skipper Butterfly

Dusted Skipper Butterfly

Dusted Skipper Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/9/20

Observation Time: 3:20 p.m.

Observation Location: meadow near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Dusted Skipper Butterfly

Scientific Name: Atrytonopsis hianna

Comments: Note the proboscis extended to gather nectar. Also note the finely banded antennae.

More Information: Wisconsin Butterflies

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/17/11

Observation Time: 12:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Eastern Amberwing dragonfly (female)

Scientific Name: Perithemis tenera

Comments: The wings of the male are entirely amber, whereas the wings of the female are clear with amber blotches.

More Information: Project Noah

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/15/13

Observation Time: 3:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Eastern Amberwing dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Perithemis tenera

Comments: This red-winged dragonfly is smaller than most other dragonflies.

More Information: Odonata Central

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/17/10

Observation Time: 9:40 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: Eastern Amberwing dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Perithemis tenera

Comments: The wings of the male are entirely amber, whereas the wings of the female are clear with amber blotches.

More Information: Odonata Central

Eastern Amberwing Dragonfly

Observer: Faith Berkland

Observation Date: 10/8/17

Observation Time: 5:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Transmission line path between Bird Road, Mansfield Street and Willow Street in Foxboro

Common Name: Eastern Buck Moth

Scientific Name: Hemileuca maia

Comments: This large moth (about 1 inch long by 1 1/2 inches wide) was flying toward me. Wide head, white & fuzzy. Above low-lying shrubbery, it quickly disappeared when it saw me. I didn’t see any orange or red markings, just black & white. The photo at this link shows what a buck moth looks like:

https://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sites/default/files/bamona_images/img_1703_3.jpg

More Information: Butterflies and Moths of North America

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/6/11

Observation Time: 3:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Eastern Forktail Damselfly

Scientific Name: Ischnura verticalis

More Information: Nature Inquiries

Eastern Forktail Damselfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/20/20

Observation Time: 5:10 p.m.

Observation Location: under high tension wires across the street from Ward’s Berry Farm

Common Name: Eastern Pine Elfin

Scientific Name: Callophrys niphon

Comments: Males perch on tops of pine trees in the sun to find receptive females. Eggs are laid singly on new needles of young trees; caterpillars feed on the needles. Chrysalids hibernate and adults emerge in the spring.

More Information: Butterflies of Massachusetts

Observer: Vin Zollo

Observation Date: 5/4/13

Observation Time: 3:35 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (Trustees of Reservations)

Common Name: Eastern Pine Elfin

Scientific Name: Callophrys niphon

More Information: Butterflies of Massachusetts

Eastern Pine Elfin

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/7/14

Observation Time: 4:15 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area (along the dirt road from the soccer fields to the dam)

Common Name: Eastern Pine Elfin

Scientific Name: Callophrys niphon

Comments: Males perch on tops of pine trees in the sun to find receptive females. Eggs are laid singly on new needles of young trees; caterpillars feed on the needles. Chrysalids hibernate and adults emerge in the spring.

More Information: Butterflies of Massachusetts

Eastern Pine Elfin

Eastern Pine Elfin

Eastern Pine Elfin

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/19/20

Observation Time: 11:10 a.m.

Observation Location: field near Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Eastern Tailed Blue butterfly

Scientific Name: Cupido comyntas

Comments: Like many small butterflies, the Eastern tailed blue is a stunning sight when viewed up close. The upper sides of the wings are blue. They appear in spring. The orange spots and “tails” on the trailing edge of their lower wings differentiate them from spring azures.

More Information: Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/27/11

Observation Time: 3:20 p.m.

Observation Location: field near Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Eastern Tailed Blue butterfly

Scientific Name: Everes comyntas

Comments: Eastern tailed blues are very small butterflies. They have tails and an eye spot on each wing that vaguely resemble antennae and eyes to fool predators.

More Information: Butterflies and Moths of North America

Eastern Tailed Blue Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/11/14

Observation Time: 6:15 p.m.

Observation Location: field near Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Eastern Tailed-Blue butterfly

Scientific Name: Cupido comyntas

Comments: Like many small butterflies, the Eastern tailed blue is a stunning sight when viewed up close. The upper sides of the wings are blue. They appear in spring.

More Information: Wikipedia

Eastern Tailed-Blue Butterfly

Eastern Tailed-Blue Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/19/12

Observation Time: 5:30 p.m.

Observation Location: Field near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Eastern Tailed-Blue butterfly

Scientific Name: Cupido comyntas

Comments: This individual lacks the orange spots usually seen at the base of the “tails” extending rearward from the hind wings.

More Information: Butterflies and Moths

Eastern Tailed-Blue Butterfly

Eastern Tailed-Blue Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/13/12

Observation Time: 10:30 a.m.

Observation Location: Soccer parking area by Gavins Pond

Common Name: Eastern Tailed-Blue butterfly

Scientific Name: Everes comyntas

More Information: Northwest Ohio Nature

Eastern Tailed-Blue Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 9/9/12

Observation Time: 3:20 p.m.

Observation Location: Sandy Ridge Circle

Common Name: Eastern Tailed-Blue butterfly

Scientific Name: Everes comyntas

Comments: This beautiful little butterfly can be found in open fields from May to October. When it spreads its wings, the blue upper sides show how this butterfly gets its name.

More Information: Wikipedia

Eastern Tailed-Blue Butterfly

Eastern Tailed-Blue Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/31/14

Observation Time: 3:44 p.m.

Observation Location: Field near Gavins Pond dam

Common Name: Eastern tent caterpillar

Scientific Name: Malacosoma americanum

Comments: This pest has spectacular coloration.

More Information: A Prairie Haven

Eastern Tent Caterpillar

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/14/09

Observation Time: 11:20 a.m.

Observation Location: Beaver Brook near tennis courts

Common Name: Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly

Scientific Name: Calopteryx maculata

Comments: Common along shallow forested streams. Adults perch on vegetation within a few feet of the water. Males are territorial and perform fluttering courtship displays. Females, which are bronze-colored with a distinctive white dot at the tops of their wings, oviposit in floating vegetation, often with the male guarding nearby.

More Information: Iowa State University BugGuide

Ebony Jewelwing Dragonfly

Ebony Jewelwing Dragonfly
Here’s a shot of a pair of ebony jewelwing damselflies at Beaver Brook, taken on 8/14/09. This photo shows an irridescent male guarding a bronze-colored female with the characteristic white dot at the top edge of her wings.

Ebony Jewelwing Dragonfly
Male perched on vegetation in Beaver Brook.

Ebony Jewelwing Dragonfly
Clear water flowing in Beaver Brook following unusually wet summer weather, 8/14/09.

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/2/11

Observation Time: 4:50 p.m.

Observation Location: Borderland State Park

Common Name: Elegant Spreadwing damselfly

Scientific Name: Lestes inaequalis

More Information: Wikipedia

Elegant Spreadwing Damselfly

Elegant Spreadwing Damselfly

Observer: Vin Zollo

Observation Date: 6/19/13

Observation Time: 12:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary

Common Name: European Skipper butterfly

Scientific Name: Thymelicus lineola

Comments: There are hundreds of these non-native butterflies in the Hayfield at this time of year.

More Information: Massachusetts Butterfly Club

European Skipper Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/26/19

Observation Time: 1:30 p.m.

Observation Location: my back yard (Gavins Pond Road)

Common Name: Fall Field Cricket

Scientific Name: Gryllus pennsylvanicus

Comments: All field crickets are able to make the universally recognizable cricket, “chirping” sounds. Males, though, are able to make the loudest and most noticeable sounds. The chirping is generated by the movement of “scrapers” found on the edge of the left forewing across a row of teeth-like structures located on the underside of the right forewing. The male field cricket generates a three note, highly trilled song which is answered by a more simplified, two note female song. The rate of chirping is directly influenced by temperature. Counting the number of chirps a male field cricket makes in 13 seconds, and then adding 40 to that number generates an approximate index of the environmental temperature (in degrees Fahrenheit).

I spotted this common insect while mowing the lawn.

More Information: The Virtual Nature Trail at Penn State New Kensington

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/16/13

Observation Time: 1:30 p.m.

Observation Location: 4 Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: False Crocus Geometer Moth

Scientific Name: Xanthotype urticaria

Comments: I was surprised to see this striking yellow moth in my backyard during the day, as most moths are nocturnal. Typically moths have longer, larger and more elaborate antennae than butterflies.

More Information: NatureSearch

False Crocus Geometer Moth

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/25/10

Observation Time: 10:45 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond outflow pool

Common Name: Familiar Bluet

Scientific Name: Enallagma civile

Comments: The familiar bluet is a damselfly. Damselflies are typically skinnier than dragonflies, and they fold their wings over their abdomen when at rest.

More Information: North American Insects and Spiders

Familiar Bluet

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 9/27/14

Observation Time: 4:15 p.m.

Observation Place: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Fishing Spider

Scientific Name: Dolomedes tenebrosus

Comments: Fishing Spiders get their name from their hunting behavior and occasional food source. They are adept at ambushing insects and other food items on land, but they are also able to submerge their bodies just under the surface of calm water and hunt for small fish and tadpoles. The bristly hairs on their body trap air bubbles that they use to breathe while underwater and waiting for something to swim by. They have been known to stay submerged for more than 30 minutes at a time when hunting in water.

More Information: Insect Identification

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 9/3/12

Observation Time: 3:20 p.m.

Observation Location: Borderland State Park

Common Name: Fishing Spider

Scientific Name: Dolomedes vittatus

Comments: This huge spider (about 3″) was spotted in aquatic vegetation near the stone hut at the edge of Lower Leach Pond at Borderland State Park. A boy with a butterfly net scooped it up so I could get a photo of it. I got the identification from www.bugguide.net. The three pairs of yellow spots on the rear abdomen help identify this species.

More Information: BugGuide

Fishing Spider

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/23/18

Observation Time: 8:50 a.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (TTOR)

Common Name: Flower Fly

Scientific Name: Helophilus fasciatus

Comments: Flower Flies (also known as “hover flies” because of their tendency to hover in mid-air for long periods), are especially interesting insects.  They are overlooked by nearly everybody but farmers, who recognize them as one of the most important groups of insects beneficial to humans.  They’re not only important pollinators, but they dispose of crop pests as carnivorous larvae. There are 15 genera in all, and hundreds of species.

More Information: NatureSearch

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/27/19

Observation Time: 3:40 p.m.

Observation Location: Conservation land near Morse & Lakeview Streets.

Common Name: Flower Fly

Scientific Name: Helophilus fasciatus (family: Syrphidae)

Comments: Flower Flies (also known as “hover flies” because of their tendency to hover in mid-air for long periods), are especially interesting insects.  They are overlooked by nearly everybody but farmers, who recognize them as one of the most important groups of insects beneficial to humans.  They’re not only important pollinators, but they dispose of crop pests as carnivorous larvae. There are 15 genera in all, and hundreds of species.

More Information: North American Insects & Spiders

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/13/13

Observation Time: 10:30 a.m.

Observation Location: Soccer parking area by Gavins Pond

Common Name: Fourteen-spotted leaf beetle

Scientific Name: Cryptocephalus guttulatus

Comments: Count the spots and you’ll know how this beetle got its name.

More Information: Insects of West Virginia

Fourteen-Spotted Leaf Beetle

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/19/13

Observation Time: 2:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Fragile Forktail Damselfly

Scientific Name: Ischnura posita

Comments: This is the male. The female is blue rather than green.

More Information: NatureSearch

Fragile Forktail Damselfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/7/11

Observation Time: 5:50 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Fragile Forktail Damselfly

Scientific Name: Ischnura posita

Comments: Fragile forktail damselflies are common in Massachusetts wetlands. This one is shown perched on a purple loosestrife leaf that had been chewed by Galerucella beetle larvae, which were introduced by the Neponset River Watershed Association to control invasive exotic purple loosestrife.

More Information: BugGuide

male:

Fragile Forktail Damselfly

female:

Fragile Forktail Damselfly

Fragile Forktail Damselfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/9/19

Observation Time: 4:55 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Fragile Forktail Damselfly

Scientific Name: Ischnura posita

Comments: This is the male. The female is blue rather than green.

More Information: Odonata Central

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 4/29/12

Observation Time: 1:30 p.m.

Observation Location: undisclosed location in Sharon

Common Name: Frosted Elfin Butterfly

Scientific Name: Callophrys irus

Comments: This small butterfly is a species of special concern.

More Information: See the Boston Globe article on this butterfly.

Frosted Elfin Butterfly

 

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/21/14

Observation Time: 2:25 p.m.

Observation Location: undisclosed location in Sharon

Common Name: Frosted Elfin Butterfly

Scientific Name: Callophrys irus

Comments: Frosted elfins are listed as rare by the Massachusetts Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP).

More Information: See the Boston Globe article on this butterfly.

Frosted Elfin Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/9/20

Observation Time: 3:15 p.m.

Observation Location: undisclosed location in Sharon

Common Name: Frosted Elfin Butterfly

Scientific Name: Callophrys irus

Comments: Frosted elfins are listed as rare by the Massachusetts Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP).

More Information: Species Status Assessment Report

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 10/18/12

Observation Time: 10:00 a.m.

Observation Location: 4 Gavins Pond Road (basement)

Common Name: Funnel Weaver Spider

Scientific Name: Agelenidae family, Coras genus

Comments: Spiders give me the creeps, especially big ones like this specimen, but I could not resist taking a photo and getting an identification from bugguide.net.

More Information: BugGuide

Funnel Weaver Spider

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/17/13

Observation Time: 11:30 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Galerucella beetle

Scientific Name: Galerucella calmariensis

Comments: The Neponset River Watershed Association introduced these European beetles in Fowl Meadow in Canton and Norwood to control invasive purple loosestrife. They have spread to Sharon, where they are having the desired effect of keeping the invasive purlple loosestrife in check so native plants can thrive.

In upper left of the photo, you can see beetle eggs.

More Information: Neponset River Watershed Association

Galerucella Beetle

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/17/11

Observation Time: 5:05 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Galerucella beetle larvae

Scientific Name: Galerucella calmariensis (or G. pusilla)

Comments: Galerucella beetles eat only purple loosestrife, an invasive exotic weed that has been displacing native wetland plants and reducing biodiversity. The Neponset River Watershed Association has been “ranching” and releasing Galerucella beetles, and they are now showing up in Sharon.

More Information: Neponset River Watershed Association

Galerucella Beetle Larva

Galerucella Beetle Larva

Galerucella Beetle Larva

Galerucella Beetle Larva

Galerucella Beetle Larva

Galerucella Beetle Larva

Galerucella Beetle Larva

Observer: John Baur

Observation Date: 6/24/11

Observation Time: 5:30 p.m.

Observation Location: Sharon Train Station

Common Name: Giant Leopard Moth

Scientific Name: Hypercompe scribonia

Comments: Also called Eyed Tiger Moth, this is a moth of the family Arctiidae. It is distributed throughout the Southern and Eastern United States from New England to Mexico. The obsolete name Ecpantheria scribonia is still occasionally encountered.

More Information: Wikipedia

Giant Leopard Moth

Observer: Josh Simons

Observation Date: 9/9/20

Observation Time: 11:00 a.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill area

Common Name: Goldrenrod Bunch Gall Midge

Scientific Name: Rhopalomyia solidaginis

Comments: This peculiar insect makes a gall on goldenrod.

More Information: iNaturalist

Observer: Josh Simons

Observation Date: 6/14/20

Observation Time: 6:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill area

Common Name: Grape Leaffolder Moth

Scientific Name: Desmia funeralis

Comments: This moth is called a grape leaffolder because its larvae folds the leaves of muscadine grape vines and keeps them folded using bands of silk thread. This interferes with the plant’s ability to photosynthesize, and weakens it, resulting in a decreased grape harvest the following year.

More Information: Wikipedia and University of Florida

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 9/4/20

Observation Time: 2:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (under power lines)

Common Name: Gray Hairstreak butterfly

Scientific Name: Satyrium melinus

Comments: This Gray Hairstreak butterfly was feeding on Sweet Everlasting.

More Information: Raising Butterflies

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/18/15

Observation Time: 4:40 p.m.

Observation Location: soccer parking lot near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Great Black Wasp

Scientific Name: Sphex pensylvanicus

Comments: Sphex pensylvanicus is a species of digger wasp, commonly known as the great black wasp. It lives across most of North America and grows to a size of 20–35 mm (0.8–1.4 in). The larvae feed on living insects that the females paralyze and carry to the underground nest. Only the females can sting, but they are not aggressive, and only sting to defend themselves.

More Information: Wikipedia

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/17/11

Observation Time: 12:15 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Great Black Wasp

Scientific Name: Sphex pensylvanicus

Comments: Sphex pensylvanicus is a species of digger wasp, commonly known as the great black wasp. It lives across most of North America and grows to a size of 20–35 mm (0.8–1.4 in). The larvae feed on living insects that the females paralyze and carry to the underground nest. Only the females can sting, but they are not aggressive, and only sting to defend themselves.

This specimen was seen on a swamp milkweed blossom (Asclepias incarnata)

More Information: Wikipedia

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/18/13

Observation Time: 3:15 p.m.

Observation Location: 4 Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: Great Black Wasp

Scientific Name: Sphex pensylvanicus

Comments: This photo shows a great black wasp carrying a paralyzed katydid to its burrow. Sphex pensylvanicus is a species of digger wasp. It lives across most of North America and grows to a size of 20–35 mm (0.8–1.4 in). The larvae feed on living insects that the females paralyze and carry to the underground nest. Only the females can sting, but they are not aggressive, and only sting to defend themselves.

More Information: Bug Eric

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/20/15

Observation Time: 5:10 p.m.

Observation Location: near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Great Golden Digger Wasp

Scientific Name: Sphex ichnumoneus

Comments: Sphex ichnumoneus is a species of solitary wasp, commonly known as the Great Golden Digger Wasp. This large and colorful wasp can frequently be found nectaring at flowers in late summer and fall. It makes burrows in bare ground or grassy places. As with most species of its genus, it specializes in hunting katydids and bush crickets.

More Information: Cape May Wildlife Guide

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/27/11

Observation Time: 3:50 p.m.

Observation Location: soccer parking lot near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Great Golden Digger Wasp

Scientific Name: Sphex ichnumoneus

Comments: Sphex ichnumoneus is a species of solitary wasp, commonly known as the Great Golden Digger Wasp. This large and colorful wasp can frequently be found nectaring at flowers in late summer and fall. It makes burrows in bare ground or grassy places. As with most species of its genus, it specializes in hunting katydids and bush crickets.

More Information: Cape May Wildlife Guide

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/25/15

Observation Time: 1:55 p.m.

Observation Location: Town-owned conservation land at Morse and Lakeview Streets

Common Name: Great Spangled Fritillary

Scientific Name: Speyeria cybele

Comments: Easily confused with Aphrodite Fritillary – see: http://www.naba.org/chapters/nabambc/frames-2species.asp?sp1=Speyeria-cybele&sp2=Speyeria-aphrodite

More Information: Butterflies and Moths of North America and USDA

Observer: Josh Simons

Observation Date: 7/16/11

Observation Time: 3:00 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill area

Common Name: Great Spangled Fritillary

Scientific Name: Speyeria cybele

Comments: Easily confused with Aphrodite Fritillary – see: http://www.naba.org/chapters/nabambc/frames-2species.asp?sp1=Speyeria-cybele&sp2=Speyeria-aphrodite

More Information: Butterflies and Moths of North America

Aphrodite Fritillary

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/7/18

Observation Time: 2:40 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (TTOR)

Common Name: Great Spangled Fritillary

Scientific Name: Speyeria cybele

Comments: Easily confused with Aphrodite Fritillary – see: http://www.naba.org/chapters/nabambc/frames-2species.asp?sp1=Speyeria-cybele&sp2=Speyeria-aphrodite

More Information: Butterflies and Moths of North America and USDA

 

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 9/16/11

Observation Time: 2:30 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond dam

Common Name: Green Stink Bug nymph

Scientific Name: Acrosternum hilare

Comments: This striking green stink bug nymph caught my eye as it sat on a rosa rugosa leaf by the pond. The adults are solid green.

I spotted the green stink bug nymph because of its bold, contrasty coloration. Perhaps the reason for the green stink bug nymph’s ostentatious display is to warn potential predators of its stink – the same reason skunks have such bold, visible markings.

More Information: BugGuide

Green Stink Bug Nymph

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/6/11

Observation Time: 4:30 p.m.

Observation Location: field near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Halloween Pennant dragonfly

Scientific Name: Celithemis eponina

Comments: This is one of my best wildlife photos. The late afternoon sunlight provided perfect illumination.

More Information: Wikipedia

Halloween Pennant Dragonfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/26/11

Observation Time: 12:30 p.m.

Observation Location: near Gavins Pond soccer field parking lot

Common Name: Halloween Pennant dragonfly

Scientific Name: Celithemis eponina

Comments: Tattered wings reflect the wear and tear of summer in this late August photo.

More Information: Wikipedia

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/19/19

Observation Time: 8:00 a.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary

Common Name: Harlequin Darner dragonfly

Scientific Name: Gomphaeschna furcillata

Comments: The Harlequin Darner is a member of the Aeshnidae family of dragonflies. The species occurs across much of the eastern United States and parts of southeast Canada. Its range extends to eastern Texas.

I encountered this specimen by chance on the pavement in the Moose Hill Audubon parking lot after a morning spent bird watching.

More Information: Bugguide.net

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/2/20

Observation Time: 1:15 p.m.

Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (TTOR)

Common Name: Harlequin Darner dragonfly

Scientific Name: Gomphaeschna furcillata

Comments: The Harlequin Darner is a member of the Aeshnidae family of dragonflies. The species occurs across much of the eastern United States and parts of southeast Canada. Its range extends to eastern Texas.

Harlequin darners resemble taper-tailed dragonflies. The pale 7-shaped mark on the side of abdominal segment 2 is diagnostic of female Harlequin Darner. Female Taper-tailed has a dark inverted J-shaped mark instead.

I encountered this specimen by chance on a low bush as I was walking back to my car after a morning spent bird watching.

More Information: Walter Sanford’s photoblog

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/9/20

Observation Time: 1:30 p.m.

Observation Location: field near Gavins Pond dam

Common Name: Harlequin Darner dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Gomphaeschna furcillata

Comments: The Harlequin Darner is a member of the Aeshnidae family of dragonflies. This species occurs across much of the eastern United States and parts of southeast Canada. Its range extends to eastern Texas.

Harlequin darners resemble taper-tailed darners. The pale 7-shaped mark on the side of abdominal segment 2 is diagnostic of female Harlequin Darner. Female Taper-tailed darners have a dark inverted J-shaped mark instead. See: https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/viewSpecies.php?species=680.

I got help identifying this specimen from Bugguide.net. If you register (it’s free), they will help you identify your photos of insects and spiders.

More Information: Walter Sanford’s photoblog

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 10/2/13

Observation Time: 12:15 p.m.

Observation Place: Woods near Beaver Brook (near Sharon train station)

Common Name: Harvestman (Daddy Longlegs)

Scientific Name: Opiliones family

Comments: Harvestmen are 8-legged arachnids, but they are not true spiders. Their bodies are oval-shaped and have no waist like a spider. They do not produce venom, and they are harmless to humans. Harvestmen are omnivores, eating a variety of organic material, or scavengers, feeding on feces or carrion, but some are predatory on aphids and other small insects.

More Information: Missouri Department of Conservation

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/31/12

Observation Time: 11:15 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Honeybee

Scientific Name: Apis mellifera

Comments: Honeybees perform the vital service of pollinating crops. Ward’s Berry Farm in Sharon maintains honeybee colonies for pollinating strawberries and other crops. Honeybees may travel several miles to gather nectar for making honey.

Since 2007, abnormally high die-offs (30–70% of hives) of honeybee colonies have occurred in North America. This has been dubbed “colony collapse disorder” (CCD). It seems to be caused by a combination of factors, possibly including neonicotinoid pesticides.

More Information: Wikipedia

Honeybee

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/16/10

Observation Time: 11:05 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Road soccer field parking lot

Common Name: Indian Skipper butterfly

Scientific Name: Hesperia sassacus

Comments: Typically found in open areas, often with some shrubby growth, such as old fields, abandoned pastures, forest clearings, and powerline cuts.

More Information: MassAudubon.org or Butterflies and Moths of North America

Indian Skipper Butterfly

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 8/11/13

Observation Time: 4:50 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Jagged Ambush Bug

Scientific Name: Phymata americana

Comments: This small insect (1/2″ in length) turns out to be predatory. It waits in flowers to ambush prey that are sometimes larger than itself. This one was found among goldenrod blossoms.

More Information: aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu or NatureSearch

Jagged Ambush Bug

Jagged Ambush Bug

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/4/11

Observation Time: 4:05 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: Japanese Beetle

Scientific Name: Popillia japonica

Comments: Japanese beetles are not very destructive in their native Japan, where they are naturally controlled by indigenous predators, but in North America it is a noted pest of about 200 species of plants including rose bushes, grapes, hops, canna, crape myrtles, birch trees, linden trees, and others.

More Information: Wikipedia

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/23/10

Observation Time: 2:30 p.m.

Observation Location: near Gavins Pond dam

Common Name: Juvenal’s Duskywing

Scientific Name: Erynnis juvenalis

Comments: This butterfly is found throughout Massachusetts. Its flight period extends from late April through early June. See the Massachusetts Butterfly Club for more photos.

More Information: Massachusetts Butterfly Atlas

Juvenal's Duskywing

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/24/13

Observation Time: 11:45 a.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Juvenal’s Duskywing butterfly

Scientific Name: Erynnis juvenalis

Comments:  Even relatively drab butterflies are beautiful.

More Information: Massachusetts Butterfly Species List

Observer: Richard Mandell

Observation Date: 8/15/16

Observation Time: N/A

Observation Location: Mountain Street

Common Name: Katydid

Scientific Name: Microcentrum rhombifolium

Comments: You might recognize the sounds in this recording of katydids chirping in late summer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ob2rEjRz-RM

More Information: Wikipedia

katydid

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/19/13

Observation Time: 2:20 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Lady Beetle

Scientific Name: Harmonia axyridis

Comments: Multicolored Asian lady beetles come in different color patterns. Some, like this one, don’t have black spots.

More Information: Wikipedia

Lady Beetle

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/4/11

Observation Time: 5:30 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Lady Beetle

Scientific Name: Harmonia axyridis

Comments: Lady beetles have variable coloration.

More Information: Wikipedia

Lady Beetle

Lady Beetle

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/5/13

Observation Time: 12:20 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Lady Beetle larva

Scientific Name: Harmonia axyridis

Comments: Lady beetle larvae don’t look much like the adults. Lady beetles eat aphids, so they can be beneficial for agriculture.

More Information: University of Minnesota

Lady Beetle Larva

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 5/24/11

Observation Time: 4:10 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond

Common Name: Lancet Clubtail dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Gomphus exilis

Comments: Male lancet clubtails have claspers at the end of the abdomen, which females lack. Lancet clubtails are common in Massachusetts near slow streams and ponds.

The name lancet comes from the dagger-shaped marking on the abdomen. The
clubtail moniker comes from the swelling of the posterior abdomen (males only).

More Information: Prince William Conservation Alliance

Lancet Clubtail Dragonfly (Male)

Lancet Clubtail Dragonfly (Male)

Lancet Clubtail Dragonfly (Male)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/19/13

Observation Time: 2:05 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond Dam

Common Name: Lancet Clubtail dragonfly (male)

Scientific Name: Gomphus exilis

Comments: Once you’ve learned all the birds, you can take up the challenge of learning the dragonflies. Start by getting a book like this one: https://www.amazon.com/Dragonflies-Damselflies-Princeton-Field-Guides/dp/0691122830

More Information: Wikipedia

Lancet Clubtail Dragonfly (Male)

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/11/20

Observation Time: 3:40 p.m.

Observation Location: along Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: Large Lace-border Moth

Scientific Name: Scopula limboundata

Comments: Large Lace-border Moths rest with their wings flat making it easy to admire the creamy hues of its wings. There is some variety within the species. Some individuals are mostly white with faint brown waves at the edges of the wings. Others have darker brown patterns on the edges. A few have a large black splotch on the forewings. When viewed together, they all look like they could be related, and indeed are the same species. They all have tiny black dots along the middle parts of the forewings. A yellow fringe runs along the bottom edge of all four wings.

Adults are active from late spring to early autumn. Two broods (families) can be produced each year. Caterpillars are a type of inchworm. They eat leaves on apple and black cherry trees, blueberry bushes, clover and the native wildflower called meadow-beauty.

The gap in the left hind wing of this specimen suggests that it narrowly escaped being eaten by a hungry bird.

More Information: insectidentification.org

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/22/10

Observation Time: 6:05 p.m.

Observation Location: 4 Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: Large Yellow Underwing moth

Scientific Name: Noctua pronuba

Comments: The name “Noctua” presumably comes from the same root as “nocturnal” meaning active at night.

More Information: Wikipedia

Large Yellow Underwing Moth

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 4/28/12

Observation Time: 2:00 p.m.

Observation Location: 4 Gavins Pond Road

Common Name: Leaf-footed bug

Scientific Name: Acanthocephala terminalis

Comments: The leaf-shaped hind legs give this bug its name.

More Information: See:
http://www.cirrusimage.com/bugs_leaf_footed_Acanthocephala.htm

Leaf-Footed Bug

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/25/15

Observation Time: 2:00 p.m.

Observation Location: field at junction of Lakeview and Morse Streets

Common Name: Lesser Maple Spanworm Moth

Scientific Name: Speranza pustularia

Comments: Note the frond-like antennae of the moth in the photo. Moths typically have larger, more intricate antennae than butterflies.

In the United States and Canada, more than 750 species of butterflies and 11,000 species of moths have been recorded. There are still thousands of moth and butterfly species that have not been found or described by scientists.

More Information: North American Moth Photographer’s Group


P1120584

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 7/11/15

Observation Time: 2:30 p.m.

Observation Location: near Gavins Pond

Common Name: Lesser Maple Spanworm Moth

Scientific Name: Speranza pustularia

Comments: Feeding on milkweed flowers.

More Information: Bugguide