21 de septiembre de 2022

Monday September 19th

Recently, a newly introduced genus of grasshoppers was identified in New Jersey by user arisingunder, and my friend user garlic106. It was brought to my attention by user graytreefrog on the iNaturalist discord server, where they sent observations by both parties. Later, I was out with Jamie (garlic106), when they mentioned talking to user brandonwoo about the recently found grasshoppers.

I decided to check this out for myself at Trotter's Crossing Soccer Complex, where arisingunder had posted two observations of the genus before. Here, I CAUGHT a total of 16 specimens, and saw an additional 4. I gave Brandon a total of 11 grasshoppers, and kept 6 for myself for pinning purposes (and for any collections that may want them in the future), which includes the first caught specimen of the genus in NJ, which was collected by Jamie. The other 16 specimens were caught by me by either use of net or my hands, as this genus doesn't jump as far as I expected and does not appear to behave by fly after jumping as other grasshoppers in the areas nearby.

I believe there is an established population that is at least a year old in the north east corner of the soccer complex, where it shares the entrance to a trail, and connects to Parkers Creek. Conditions in the area are similar to descriptions of their native habitats, as there is lots of marsh land surrounding the Complex. However, I think this population will not spread too fast, as they have lots of natural predators, and in fact I found one while hunting the grasshoppers (T. sinensis), but if they were to spread rapidly then it could likely cause widespread damage.

It is unknown at the time which species this is exactly, and I am awaiting DNA testing by Brandon.

Publicado el 21 de septiembre de 2022 a las 02:11 PM por evelyntomology evelyntomology | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

08 de junio de 2022

June 3rd Light Trap

Last Friday, I got another chance to go light trapping. This was the final time of me going out to piggy-back off someone else's set-up, as I finally got my own set-up! We found some amazing things; 3 Io Moths, 6 Luna Moths, 2 Imperial Moths, and even the rare Pine-Devil Moth. This made me want my own set-up, so that weekend I picked up everything I needed. I got two 40w Bug Zap Light Bulbs (https://www.therestaurantstore.com/items/231044, but I assume that https://www.therestaurantstore.com/items/67124 also works), which worked AMAZING on the night of June 4th. I also picked up a Ryobi 120w Power Inverter, but you could probably also get the 150w version for a similar price used.

Publicado el 08 de junio de 2022 a las 12:13 PM por evelyntomology evelyntomology | 1 observación | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

16 de mayo de 2022

First Search for Samia Cynthia

Today, a friend and I were up in North Jersey for business unrelated to entomology, but an area known to me was on our way back. A little while ago, I read about Samia cynthia. A species of silkmoth introduced into Philadelphia to try creating a silk trade for ourselves in the US! Very interesting history about it, I highly recommend reading into it here: http://fitlersquarepress.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Book-1_Ecology_web_chapter5_rev11012017.pdf.

Anyway, I had heard about reports of the species still having small, but existing populations in the NJ Meadowlands and surrounding areas, and this was backed up by two sightings since 2015. While still extraordinarily rare, there is definitely potential for it to have populations there! So, we went to check it out. We checked an extremely small portion of Liberty State Park, which has a rampant population of Tree-of-Heaven, Samia cynthia's only host-plant (dubbed very well, Ailanthus Silk Moth). Unfortunately, to nobody's surprise, nothing was found. This is an extremely rare moth to find anywhere nearby, so I definitely urge some of my fellow iNatters in the North Jersey/NYC area: please be on the lookout for this moth! I would absolutely LOVE to see some observations of it this year, even if they aren't mine, because it would be wonderful to see the species still in-tact.

I also wonder if it still exists in the Philadelphia metro area? Saturniids are rather common in the city, with parks like Fairmount, Washington, Rittenhouse having observations of even the Cecropia moth, which I think is pretty amazing. But since only an extremely small portion of the population is interested in this kind of stuff, not many people realize what they're looking at. I believe if I remember correctly, the last population known was by Christopher Cook. He found about 6 cocoons on an Ailanthus tree near the Eastwick SEPTA train stop. Would be interesting to look into. We'll see this year if any new records are made (Check out BAMONA to see records of them from the past couple of years - they're definitely still in NJ!).

Publicado el 16 de mayo de 2022 a las 12:23 AM por evelyntomology evelyntomology | 2 observaciones | 2 comentarios | Deja un comentario