Water Measurer (Hydrometra sp.)
5 April, 2008
SUN! After seemingly endless days of cloudy, rainy weather, we finally get a break.
I spent an hour and a half sitting at the edge of a pond watching water striders, backswimmers, water boatmen, and a variety of diving beetles. But the highlight came when I noticed a water measurer (Hydrometridae, Hydrometra sp.) walking across the water surface. It's the first time I've ever seen a member this family of insects other than in the Enns Entomology Museum. Maybe I haven't been looking closely enough, but in my defense, it was gray-brown and about the size of a sewing needle. While sitting at the pond, I heard an insect jump onto dried vegetation behind me. It was a froghopper (Cercopidae Lepyronia sp.)
I ended up with 5 butterfly species for the day – Cabbage White (Pieris rapae), Mourning Cloak (Nymphalis antiopa), Question Mark (Polygonia interrogationis), Eastern Comma (Polygonia comma), and Gray Comma (Polygonia progne). One of the Gray Commas was nectaring at Fragrant Sumac (Rhus aromatica).