Readers’ wildlife photos

This will probably be the last RWP post in a while, as I leave for O’Hare and India tomorrow morning. So let’s have another potpourri of photos from various readers.

Reader Tom Carrolan works with raptors, and this is the photo for his Christmas card this year. The caption is “Happy Owlidays,” and his note is: “Going shopping for a fresh & festive holiday duck…” The species is of course the snowy owl (Bubo scandiacus).

From Karen Bartelt, taken at the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas, we have a Red-bordered metalmark (Caria ino); “wingspan about 1″”:

Unfortunately, I lost the name and notes of the person who sent me this photo of an adult Luna moth (Actius luna), sent on August 14; please contact me if this is yours.

Continuing with Lepidoptera, reader Paul Doerder sent me a group of lovely moth pictures from Ohio; I’ll put up one today: the Ailanthus webworm mothAtteva aurea:

From Michael Hannah, a tui (Prosthemadera novaeseelandiae) from New Zealand, photographed at the Pukaha Mt. Bruce Sanctuary—a place I visited in New Zealand. His notes say “one of my favourite birds – noisy, aggressive – but with the most beautiful feathers.” Note the white feather collar that gives it the name “parson bird”:

Here’s one of a set sent by crack arthropod photographer Mark Sturtevant. The weevils are mating en masse:

We have… we have… an inordinate fondness for weevils. I caught a lucky break in identifying this species since there are so many weevils that look like this. But the Bug Guide web sight can be searched for specific details, and a search there for ‘weevil, thistle’ produced a good candidate, Larinus planusand its preferred host the Canadian thistle (Cirsium arvense)

And finally, some Felis catus resident at the Bristol Cat pub Bag of Nails, sent by reader David Aylesworth:

I think you’ve mentioned the Bag of Nails cat pub in Bristol (UK) on your site before [JAC: indeed: here and here] but I finally made it there (I live in Florida) and wanted to share a few pics. There were 5-6 cats lying on the bar and chairs, mostly sleeping, but would move around a bit. The one on the red stool is Wolfgang, who sat with us (and let us pet him) for about an hour. The owner, Luke (bearded guy), said that all tips go to the cats. It was the highlight of my trip!

If you’re in Bristol, be sure and stop by here. They have cats, but also real ales on tap (see the list in the top photo).



  1. starskeptic
    Posted December 14, 2017 at 7:40 am | Permalink

    One should always choose the lesser of two weevils…

    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted December 15, 2017 at 12:16 pm | Permalink


  2. Ken Kukec
    Posted December 14, 2017 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    ‘appy Owlidays — Sounds like something one might say before coming under the tutelage of Prof. Higgins.

  3. Posted December 14, 2017 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    The the pictures! And the National Butterfly Center is another place I will need to add to my list of places to visit if ever I am bound for Texas.

    • Frank
      Posted December 14, 2017 at 10:19 am | Permalink

      That really nice picture of the weevils is also a “lucky break” because we can see in the bottom pair that the male is just about to insert his highly sclerotized aedeagus (although I can’t be sure that he isn’t instead in the process of withdrawing it). This usually happens rather quickly relative to the total time a pair spends copulating.

    • Posted December 14, 2017 at 11:41 am | Permalink

      The the? Meant to say ‘Terrific’, I suppose.

  4. Posted December 14, 2017 at 10:23 am | Permalink

    Wonderful shots of the Snowy Owls – in a snowscape!

    Real ales: Love ’em!

    When we were in the UK in 2015, I noticed that the ‘Murican style of over-hopped beer was beginning to creep into British brewing. not too much, thankfully, but I had a few (local, English) beers that were suspiciously unlike the Real Ales I’ve had in many trips to the UK.

    Long live Real Ale, in the traditional styles!

    • Kiwi Dave
      Posted December 14, 2017 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

      The owl photos are quite ethereal, especially the third one where the owl’s wings seem to dissolve into delicate patterns against the background.

      And as I’m writing this, I can hear a tui loudly calling several houses away.

  5. Karen E Bartelt
    Posted December 14, 2017 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    Great owls. I keep looking for them here in IL.
    Pretty sure that’s “my” luna moth, and almost certain Jerry posted it before. Rescued from a McDonalds drive through and released in my backyard a few years ago.

    • Posted December 14, 2017 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      That is a young male, so it was given another chance to fly that night to look for a female. Good on ‘ya!

  6. SnowyOwl
    Posted December 14, 2017 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    Just to clarify the “owls”, plural comments:
    This is one Snowy Owl captured in three moments — glimpsing, looking around, and then chasing after the ducks.

  7. tjeales
    Posted December 14, 2017 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    That web-worm moth to my eye looks like it’s mimicking a beetle

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