Somewhat inspired by
my last trip
which ended a long absence from my arthropod photography adventures - I decided to have a dedicated day of bugging at Chalerm Phrakiat Thai Prakan National Park to get me into the mood for a longer bugging trip (next week) as well as iron out some issues with my camera setup.
Conditions were good and the sun came out, but humidity was high making it a tiring day. The water level was very high with the reservoir being full already - makes you wonder if we are going to have flooding problems again this year. There were some very interesting finds from this park which is normally quite quiet as it has a lot of bamboo (a result of it only recently being approved as an NP meaning that logging and hunting continued after it had stopped in adjacent areas such as Keang Krachan and Mae Nam Pachi).
I have a thing for Membracidae, they are surprisingly small and cute yet not easy to find. They are sometimes referred to as "thorn bugs" and you often find them on new growth stalks where you may see a thorn (but no one really knows why the are the shapes they are). I was ecstatic to actually see two in a day ...
On the spider front, there were a number of Myrmarachne about (all same species) - a weird jumping spider that you think is an ant until you take a photograph, zoom in and see the eyes of a Salticidae jumping spider.
And also I spotted a flower crab spider - tiny in size but what a spectacular camouflage - just sitting it out waiting fro prey to come to the flower.
I sat by a leaf I saw a Neocollyris bonelli (I think - the smaller tiger beetles can be confusing) on for about 20 minutes hoping it would come back to the same leaf - it was jumping around by not stopping in a position I could get the camera into. And then baaam! It was back and so was a friend ...
And lastly, this confused me - I was sure I was photographing a wasp of some kind but that eye was weird when I looked at it on the camera back screen - even with my poor eyes. It was not until I got the file onto the computer this morning and saw the body covering that I realized this was a Sesiidae moth - but not the usual ones I see with the "hairy legs".
Can you believe its a moth ?!? Sesiidae moths are characterized by their hymenopteriform (similar form to wasps, bees or ants) batesian mimicry. Batesian mimicry is mimicry in which an edible animal is protected by its resemblance to a noxious one that is avoided by predators.
I am really enjoying my "return" to bugging - am now going to head off on a longer trip to see what I can find,