Gossamer Tapestry

Reflections on conservation, butterflies, and ecology in the nation's heartland

Monday, June 30, 2008

Circus of the Spineless #34

The Heavily Hexapod Edition

This is my first attempt at hosting a blog carnival, so I wasn't entirely sure what to expect. As the month progressed I began getting submissions. At first, they were all about insects. Then there were more insects. At the end of the month- lots of posts about insects. OK, there were a few other arthropods thrown in, but almost nothing else at all. I can only conclude that the malacologists all fell victim to the spineless war waged at this very carnival a couple of months ago. Either that or they're all off diving at exotic locales this month and don't have Internet access.

Haploa reversa sez:
Check out COTS #34

So, without further delay, let's get the ball rolling on this carnival.

Canthon sp.
Illinois Beach State Park - June 28, 3008

Check out the many insect oriented offerings this month:

Dr. Know experiences the joys of breeding Luna Moths. The discussion comparing Georgian and Pennsylvanian Luna Moths kept reminding me of questions about European and African swallows.

Rurality has a gorgeous picture of a cicada in the genus Tibicen. After last year's cicada emergence around these parts, I'm just as glad to be seeing Tibicen rather than Magicicada.

Cedrorum also supplies us with a flashy insect- this time, a Rosy Maple Moth.

Gallicissa is visited in his room- at night- by a strange female. TMI??

Speaking of liaisons, Florida Cracker has a whole series of pictures of robber fly romance.

Fishfly - Chauliodes sp.

Seabrooke gave me a choice of four posts, reminding me of the carnival rule limiting monthly submissions to two. I chose the one about fishflies because UrSpo mentioned an interest in them, and because I can illustrate this entry with a photo my own. She also has a fine piece on the scarab beetle Pelidnota punctata, a perennial favorite. To me, the elytra look as though they are made of burnished wood. Being a stickler for the rules myself, I won't even consider linking to her other two posts about moths and mosquitoes.

Dave Coulter of Osage + Orange takes us from fishflies to fishing flies in his entry about a damselfly in the genus Enallagma.

Troy and Martha from Ramblings Around Texas pause in their Alaska adventures long enough to post a picture of the sulphur-winged grasshopper. Not fair! Arphia sulphurea is much prettier in Texas than it is in Illinois.

From the heart of Sycamore Canyon in southern Arizona, Kathie experiences an insect invasion and fears for her mesquite tree. She manages to get some excellent photos in the process. The identity of the mystery insects is buried in the post's comments. They are spotted blister beetles (Epicauta sp.).

Bev explores thanatosis in the Pale Green Weevil.

While we're on the subject of death, Thingfish23 has a whole series on insects that are associated with carcasses. Many are used in forensics. Lunch, anyone?

If that isn't gross enough for you, check out the aftermath of When Parasitoids Attack at Ugly Overload.

Wanderin Weeta shares a touching coming of age tale- of a spittlebug.

My own insect additions are geographically far-flung this month, ranging from my collecting trip to Colorado earlier in the month to my own back door.

Wrapping up our insect extravaganza, new blogger Celeste gives an accounting of some of the invertebrates encountered this past weekend during the Lake County, Illinois BioBlitz. She poses the taxonomic challenge: can't we all just get along?

Probably not, but in the spirit of ecumenism, I also pass along the following invertebrate postings that do not involve six legs.

Over at Niches, Wayne has some eye-popping photos of a crab spider, and explores spider cladistics. He's also done a bunch of great insect posts, but the Circus really is desperate for non-insect posting this month. So I've linked to his spider stuff.

At A Blog Around the Clock, Bora answers the perennial question, why are there so many earthworms on the sidewalk after it rains?

Christopher Taylor has a great post on the nightmare that is Harvestman taxonomy. I'm in need of the lesson- a few months ago he caught me misidentifying a harvestman as a spider (cringe). Christopher also provided one of only two marine submission of this entire carnival- an exploration of crinoid fossils.

The other marine submission? Julie at Pines Above Snow has penned a lovely review of the book Beautiful Swimmers: Watermen, Crabs, and the Chesapeake Bay along with a tribute to author William Warner following his recent death.

There may be a third marine submission this month. Jim Lemire at from Archaea to Zeaxanthol has a mystery photo. The subject material is in water. Jim doesn't say whether it's fresh or salt (or in between). So far, nobody has guessed the right answer. As usual, I'm clueless.

Circus of the Spineless #35. Location to be announced.



At 22:26, Blogger Kevin Zelnio said...

Oh Dear!! I forgot to submit something. Well, my whole blog is about the spineless...

Great round up and not bad for carnie newby!

At 22:59, Blogger Jim Lemire said...

Doug - excellent carnival. thanks for including my submission. and yes, it is salty.

At 05:35, Blogger cedrorum said...

Thanks for the link. What a great list of posts. I know what I will be doing for the next couple of days.

At 08:16, Blogger Amila Salgado said...

Great carnival Doug!
I am glad to be in such good company.

At 09:28, Blogger Ur-spo said...

that was very well done. You did a marvelous job. i hope it wasn't too much work. i vote to have another one some day.

At 15:36, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. THIS will take some time to go through, so will be back to visit when I'm caught up here....but this seems like a fascinating afternoon tour. THANKS for the carnival, Doug.

At 20:34, Blogger Dave Coulter said...

Great job, Doug! Thanks for including my post, too :)

At 05:03, Blogger Dr. Know said...

Just fabulous, daaaling.
Thanks for the link.
Next time, I should try and put more timely effort into a submission.

It'll take me a while to make it through all the links, and subsequent distractions, but it looks great so far.

Still believe I could have extracted more sick humor from a post related to latter day politicians...

At 10:32, Blogger Texas Travelers said...

Great job with the circus.
Excellent layout and lots of interesting stuff. Thanks for including my submission.

Well done.

I'll have to come back several times to get it all. Lots to see. The insect guys were out in full force.

At 17:42, Blogger Kathie Brown said...

Doug, that moth at the top is so pretty! I love the irregularlly shaped spots. The next photo just looked like a pile of dung to me until I enlarged the picture. I will try to get around to some of these other sites also. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I've updated the Insect Invasion post with the info you gave me and made a link to your blog. Thanks once again for all your help. I'm off to CT this weekend, so if you don't hear from me in awhile, please don't feel snubbed!

At 22:21, Blogger Doug Taron said...

Kevin- Thanks. It was fun.

Jim- thanks for the clue. I still have no idea what it is.

cedrorum- I appreciated the submission. It was nice to see some new faces in the carnival, yours included.

Gallicissa- I'm glad to have you as part of this. I am in awe of your recent dragonfly posts.

Spo- thank you. This is a bit of a different blogging direction for me. See all the trouble you started?

Mark- As always, your kind words are appreciated.

Doc- Why limit it to the politicians. There are plenty of spineless humans flapping their gums these days. I enjoyed your contribution.

Troy- I enjoyed your submission. Even though I'm still not right about how much prettier that species is down your way.

Kathie- the Haploa moths are very abundant around these parts. They are pretty, though they can be a bit of a pain during butterfly monitoring. Have fun in New England. We can make final plans for getting together when you return.

At 22:23, Blogger Doug Taron said...

Oops, Dave, I missed your comment. Thanks for the submission.

At 11:52, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Doug - I noticed you like tiger beetles. You might be interested in my recent post "Saving Missouri's Tigers (6/23/08). -- Ted

At 12:14, Blogger Ed E. O'Path said...

What's brown and sounds like a bell? Dunnnngggggg.

That's from Monty Python. I wish I could say I made it up.

You've some gall to impugn my maggots as gross when you post balls of sh*t, but all is forgiven 'cos I loves ya Doug.

Thanks for linking to me!

At 12:06, Blogger Doug Taron said...

Ted- Thank you so much for the heads up on your post (for others, link to Ted's post here). It's a great article.

EEOP- It was a scarab beetle. the presence of dung in the photo was merely incidental.


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