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Fifty Species Goal: #10 - 14

A very exciting few days here! (Well, for me. I don't know about the rest of you. Those of you who aren't excited about bugs, probably not.)

More moths!

#10 -- Melanolophia signataria Signate Melanolophia

#11 -- Zale lunata Lunate Zale


This is a rather large, very handsome moth, a member (if the internet is correct) of the Owlet Moth Tribe. I love that there is an Owlet Moth Tribe and wish to write stories about them.

#12 -- Protoboarmia porcelaria Porcelain Gray

#13 -- Acleris maculidorsana Stained-back Leafroller

And #14 isn't a moth at all, but the awesome little native plant Chimaphila maculata, or "Spotted Wintergreen." My photos don't look like much, but it's a dark, waxy green leaf with a thick white midrib and red stems. I found it on a dry embankment by the driveway, where it passes through pine trees. Unfortunately for my ambitions, it transplants very poorly--it's a symbiote with soil fungus, and if the fungus isn't present or is disrupted too badly, it won't take. It's as common as it gets in the Piedmont in the Carolinas, but rare and occasionally endangered everywhere else. I am enormously honored to have some in the yard.

Meanwhile, in the garden things are coming up, usually several feet from where I thought they were planted, and the goldfinches have turned that mangy yellow color that they get before they manage to molt all the way to gold.

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You have a lovely gift for observstion. There is value in looking at tiny things. It slows us down in a way that I think is good for us large animals. I would so read a story about an owlet moth!

That's a really gorgeous moth.

Do you think you could transplant it if you took a large portion of the earth around it, too? Maybe wait until after a rain so the dirt holds together, then dig it in a similar manner to digging a tree's root ball?

It's probably possible, but I think I'd probably need to be a better gardener. If there was a lot more of it, I'd be willing to try it on one patch, but there's only like three little leaf clusters. Maybe in a few years, if it fills in.

It has been nice knowing you all, but I am selling all my possessions to join the Owlet Moth Tribe.

I am struck by how much the moth's shape resembles that of a stealth bomber, which is designed to minimize radar reflections. I wonder if natural selection evolved it this way because it minimized sonar reflections from bats?

I like this idea and wish for it to be incorporated into the Owlet Tribe Tales.

I saw no picture of yours for #14, but googling its latin name yields a lovely little thing. Cool!

I'm trying to decide if I can add a pair of sandhill cranes to my backyard life list.

They spent yesterday afternoon in the middle of a flock of geese in the cornfield behind my yard. But ... but ... the property ADJOINS my backyard. Can I count them?

I can personally attest that the spotted wintergreen is hard to grow. (It is native here in Illinois, but not in former corn fields.) Failed once, failed twice, again and I'm done.
Your Lunate zale is a magnificent moth.

Edited at 2014-03-28 11:24 pm (UTC)

I would think it's okay since they are included in your backyard view...

Lovely moths. It does conjure up some lovely images the Owlet Moth Tribe. A tribe of wise moths no doubt.

I love that there's an Owlet Moth Tribe too because I love owls. :3

This is less than relevant but made me think of you! http ://news. nationalpost. com/2014/03/27/how-canada-became-home-to-some-of-the-worlds-more-visually-stunning-and-fun-heraldry/ (Just remove the spaces.)

Ok, this reply isn't moth-related, but I think your backyard needs one of these!

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