There is so much going on in the natural world this time of year it's hard to take it all in. Birds! Flowers! Frogs! Bugs! I don't even know where to begin. Here's a smattering of small phenomena I came across the other morning. I stepped out on the front step and saw the dismembered remains of a June bug. Who perched on my porch and snacked on this beetle? My extensive research (googling "what eats june bugs?") turned up a lot of critters that dine on the grubs, but no mention of beetle-eaters. Any ideas?
The bluets (Houstonia caerulea) are still flowering here and there on the lawn. These are one of the first wildflowers to come out in spring and it's nice to see them still going strong (reigns in that "summer's going by too fast" sensation a bit).
E left his flip-flops in the driveway after we got home from camping and this nursery web spider (Pisaurina mira) thought the bottom of one was a dandy place to sun itself.
I've seen a few dragonflies here and there (more every day), but I've been stuck in bird mode—not yet in odonata mode. Time to dig out the net and the field guides and refresh my id skills. A few very cooperative specimens stopped to pose for a picture. This one I think is a stream cruiser (Didymops transversa).
I'm thinking this one is a lancet clubtail (Gomphus exilis).
And this one I'm pretty sure is delta-spotted spiketail (Cordulegaster diastatops).
And finally, Z discovered a robin's nest tucked in the kiwi vine that grows over our deck rail. Mama robin wasn't home when I poked my camera in to snap a shot, and I hope she returned soon after. It will be fun to witness little robins grow up right outside our back door.
What small wonders have you been noticing lately?