A Gentle Poke

Continuing on from yesterday’s nature nerds’ outing.

Our next stop yesterday was at the False Foxglove (Aureolaria grandiflora). A few were still blooming but this time it was the bugs in the area that proved to be more interesting (at least to me). Someone drilled a hole in the still green seed.
The Common Buckeye (Junonia coenia) was munching down on the False Foxglove leaves. In fact there were several of different sizes of the Buckeye cats on the plants. The larvae eat a a wide variety of plants. I have seen them on Indian Paintbrushes, Plantago species, and Ruellia (Ruellia nodiflora) to name a few. However the False Foxglove will now be added to my list for these munchers as a new host plant.

Make sure to look close at the blue-black spiked spines. And the orange warts at the base of the spines on the sides.
Additionally the orange head compliments the orange warts. Certainly a beauty!
The Trailing Wild Bean (Strophostyles helvola) flowers turned a pale yellow as they get older. (Note: the leaves are not the bean’s leaves but ironweed.) The ants were all over the beans!

So I knew that the ants were there for the necter from the extra-floral nectaries!

And they got their little rears in the air so they are Acrobat Ants (Crematogaster)! Another feature key is the heart-shaped gaster (the black part). Twenty-eight species are known in North America. (BugGuide).
A Rough-leaf Dogwood leaf when torn will have a little string. The Rough-leaf Dogwood is just one of many host plants for the IO Moth (Automeris io).

Jeanne has had the sharp eyes for finding the IO Moth cats. Just look at those black tipped spines. The spines are hollow and can embed in your skin causing a burning sensation. The affected area may begin to itch and turn red. Pain may begin to decline after a couple of hours, and swelling will decline after about 8 hours.

A gentle poke got our friend to move just a little.

Scientists Reveal Why Asp Caterpillar Stings Are So Excruciatingly Painful

A Popular Fish Found in Aquariums Is Actually a Whole New Species

Keep looking!

The more you know, the more you see and the more you see, the more you know


  1. Great pictures of those cats. Interesting article on asps too. Ive never been unlucky enough to be stung by one. Have you?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *