Along the Air Line... 2017 - Summer, Part 7
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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Stan Malcolm Photo



July 26th.  Selfheal (Prunella vulgaris).









Dun Skipper (Euphyes vestris).









A male Black-winged Damselfly (Calopteryx maculatum).



The deep black wings and metallic green body are striking.






The female has much less metallic coloration, bold white stigmas, and dark wing tips while most of the wing surface is not so dark.



The spiny legs form a basket for caturing prey in flight.






A Red-spotted Purple (Limenitis arthemis astyanax).



False Nettle (Boehmeria cylindrica).



Its flowers are anything but showy...



...but it hosts caterpillars of Red Admiral butterflies (Vanessa atalanta).  This mid-instar larva was sheltered in a curled over leaf.






Several other creatures hanging out on the False Nettles included this late instar Katydid nymph (Family Tettigoniidae)...






...and this Harvestman.



Harvestmen are strange creatures with a single body region and eyes mounted on a small turret.



Three creatures tell a story: The ant protects the Treehopper in return for access to the sugary treehopper waste fluid.  The treehopper in turn is concerned for the small pale nymph, barely visible above it.



I think this Flower Longhorn beetle is Strangalia famelica.



A pair of Flower Longhorn beetles (Strangalia luteicornis).



I think this is a Digger Wasp (Family Crabronidae) but am open to suggestions.









A male Syrphid Flower Fly, probably Toxomerus geminatus.



Hickory Tussock Moth caterpillar (Lophocampa caryae).



Sweet Pea (Lathyrus odoratus).



July 27th.  Ornamental Day Lilies at the Route 85 trail head.












July 28th.  Northern Water Snake (Nerodia sipedon) sunning by a patch of Poison Ivy (Toxocodendron radicans).  Of the two species, the plant is the more dangerous.



The banding pattern is more pronounced in young snakes and largely invisible in older adults.  I'd say this is a young adult with intermediate patterning.



July 31st.  This stump seems to be a Great Blue Heron's (Ardea herodius) new favorite perch.



Cardinal FLower (Lobelia cardinalis) is blooming right before where Raymond Brook passes under Old Colchester Road.



August 1st.  Blue Vervain (Verbena hastata).









Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus) up close.



This male was "puddling" - absorbing nutrients from soil that will be passed to the female during mating.






Honey Bee (Apis mellifera).






A Bee Wolf wasp (Philanthus sp.).






August 3rd.  Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodius) in heavy fog.






Male Wood Duck (Aix sponsa).



When I passed by a few minutes later, there were two Stump Ducks.