The Jacarandas are in bloom!

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Jacaranda in bloom. Cuernavaca, Mexico. March 10, 2014.

But otherwise, the plant life is suffering from drought. We are in month five of the dry season. We have had only one day  (March 9th, 2014) of significant rainfall so far this year, and it shows.

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Dry conditions. Cuernavaca, Mexico. March 15, 2014.

However, a few insect species have made a reappearance after several months absent. Maybe this is an indication of changing conditions?

Hemiptera: 

1. Unidentified species of stink bug. [Rare]

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Unidentified stink bug. Observed March 10, 2014.

Hymenoptera:

1. Pollistes sp.: [Occasional]

Polistes sp. Observed March 15, 2014.
Polistes sp. Observed March 15, 2014.

Additional Hymenoptera species observed but not photographed:

  • Ampulex compressa: [Common]
  • Psorthaspis sp. (not confirmed): [Rare]
  • Apis sp: [Frequent]

Lepidoptera: (Insects in this order are the most frequently observed at this time.)

1. Achlyodes pallida: Observed March 15, 2014. Not photographed, but similar to this one seen in Mexico City two weeks earlier. [Rare]

Achlyodes pallida. Observed in Mexico City on Feb. 28, 2014.
Achlyodes pallida. Observed in Mexico City on Feb. 28, 2014.

2. Anthanassa sp.: Based on markings, I saw at least two different species during this observation period, but was unable to definitively identify them. [Occasional]

Anthanassa sp., possibly A. t. texana? Observed March 15, 2014.
Anthanassa sp., possibly A. t. texana? Observed March 15, 2014.

3. Chlosyne ehrenbergii. Prior to this observation, the last time I recorded seeing this species was November 29, 2013. [Rare]

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Chlosyne ehrenbergii. Observed March 11, 2014.
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Chlosyne ehrenbergii (same individual as above).

4. Danaus plexippus: [Rare]

Danaus plexippus. Observed March 15, 2014.
Danaus plexippus. Observed March 15, 2014.

5. Eurema daira sidonia. This species remains the most frequently observed, although some adults are starting to look a little worn. [Abundant]

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Eurema daira sidonia. Observed March 10, 2014.

6. Blues: I have observed at least two species of Blues, which I suspect are Echinargus isola (not pictured) and Hemiargus ceraunus (below). [Occasional]

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Hemiargus ceraunus. Observed March 10, 2014.

7. Junonia sp.: I only saw one Buckeye during this observation period, but it was a beauty! [Rare]

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Junonia sp. doing an excellent dried leaf impression. Observed March 10, 2014.
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Junonia sp. (same individual as above).

8. Myscelia sp.: There are a few species of Myscelia in our area. I think the one below could be Myscelia ethusa and the following is likely Myscelia cyananthe. [Occasional to Rare]

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Myscelia ethusa? Observed March 11, 2014.
Male Myscelia cyananthe? Observed March 15, 2014.
Male Myscelia cyananthe? Observed March 15, 2014.

9. Papilio sp.: I suspect that this is a Papilio species. Prior to this observation, the last time I recorded seeing a species in the Swallowtail family was November 17, 2013.

Possibly Papilio rogeri pharnaces? Observed March 15, 2014.
Possibly Papilio rogeri pharnaces? Observed March 15, 2014.
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Papilio sp.? (same individual as above).

10. Phyciodes pallescens: [Occasional]

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Phyciodes pallescens. Observed March 11, 2014.

11. Polites vibex praeceps: One lonely but beautiful male. [Rare]

Male polites vibex praeceps. Observed March 15, 2014.
Male Polites vibex praeceps. Observed March 15, 2014.

12. Siproeta stelenes biplagiata: There are at least two adults who have taken up residence in a tree. [Frequent to Occasional]

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Siproeta stelenes biplagiata. One of two individuals. Observed March 10, 2014.
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Siproeta stelenes biplagiata. Second of two individuals. Observed March 10, 2014.
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Same individual as above under natural light.
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Siproeta stelenes biplagiata. Observed March 10, 2014.

13. Caterpillar, suspected Pyrrharctia isabella. [Rare]

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Deceased caterpillar. Pyrrharctia isabella? Observed March 14, 2014.

Additional Lepidoptera species observed but not photographed:

  • Ancyloxypha arene and/or Copaedes minima: [Occasional to Rare]
  • Calephelis sp. : [Rare]
  • Cyllopsis sp.: [Occasional]
  • Heliconius charithonia: [Rare]
  • Pyrgus oileus: [Rare]

Until next week…  In the meantime, please do a rain dance for us!

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