Out and About 2016 – Fauna

December 31, 2016 Botanical, Gardening, Nature 1 Comment

Wow – it’s just over 4 hours until the end of 2016! And it’s been three months since I last posted anything! I don’t really do New Year’s Resolutions, but perhaps I should work on my post frequency in the new year =)

I didn’t spend nearly as much time taking photos outdoors this year as I have in past years. It was such a hot summer; I had had enough of the heat by mid-June! I was also busier this year than I have been in past years, which I can’t complain about. I photographed properties/buildings in five different states, including 20 properties in Texas in mid-November. I’ll be posting some of that work soon.

This post and the next are going to be dedicated to rounding up the creature and plant photos that I didn’t get around to posting in the past year. This post is creatures. This coming year I’m hoping to find more frogs and toads (I think the overabundance of chipmunks this past year had something to do with the lack of frogs in the yard, as did the dry weather), more spiders and more furry friends!

I’m going to have to try to photograph more flying Carpenter Bees this sping. My shutter speed obviously was not quite fast enough but at least the bee is in focus! Photographed in early March.

This is a Camel Cricket, also referred to as a Cave Cricket. They’re categorized in the same order of insects as grasshoppers, katydids, locusts and regular old crickets. This one was down in a hole that had been dug for sinking a flower pot into, so it wasn’t very easy to photograph. Photographed in mid-March.

Camel/Cave Crickets are harmless and mostly just a nuisance, as they like dark, moist places and are often found in basements.

This is an Orchard Spider (Leucauge venusta)! It was very small and difficult to photograph since the web was bouncing around in a very light breeze. Hopefully I’ll see more of them this year so I can try again to get some sharper photos. Photographed in early June.

I found this tiny Praying Mantis in a potted plant on the deck. He/she was only about 1″ long. Photographed with a Samsung S6 in early July (and edited slightly for exposure).

I’m pretty sure the bee in this photo and the next three photos is a Carpenter Bee. The purple flower is Salvia and it is a great flower to have in or near your vegetable garden. Bees love it and you need pollinators to visit your fruits and veggies!

A muddy cicada exoskeleton clinging to a pepper plant. Photographed in mid-August.

These are Leaf-Footed Bug larvae hanging out on the tomatoes. They don’t usually harm full-grown tomatoes much, but they can prevent younger fruits and plants from maturing. When they are all grown up they look a bit like Stink Bugs. Also photographed in mid-August.

A Ruby-Throated Hummingbird approaching the feeder. I edited the deck out of the lower corner of the photo. Photographed in early September.

A Ruby-Throated Hummingbird silhouetted against the sky. After converting the photo to black and white I increased the highlights and decreased the shadows (the opposite of what I would normally do) and cropped away a good bit of the sky and foreground. Photographed in early September.

This is a Green Anole. They can change colors from green to brown and are sometimes referred to as chameleons, which they are not. I spotted this on while on a walk to photograph a small, yellow flower (which I later learned was called a Showy Rattlebox). Photographed in early October.