Saturday, July 25, 2009

A Morning Walk - Along a Forest Fringe

I alighted at the bus stop outside Venus Drive on a fine Saturday morning (18 July). I was fully prepared to take a long trek into the Ranger's Station at Sime Forest. But somehow I was attracted by a row of blooming Common Asystasia flowers along the forest fringe and decided to take a look. Wow, quite a number of insects were busy feeding on the flowers. Subsequently, I ended up at the same place where I visited recently.

This is a cuckoo bee, a Thyreus species according to John. Though I saw it many times in the field but I have never got a chance to get a shot as it was always skittish and hyper-active. This was my first record shot of this bee species. I vow to get a better shot next time and let John to determine if we have other similar species here.
This Chestnut Bob (Iambrix salsala salsala ) risked its life by inserting its head into the flower's tube-shaped fused corolla to sip nectar. You can imagine the outcome if there was a spider hiding inside. I just wonder why didn't it use its long proboscis ? This looks like a nymph of a cricket. It remained stationary on the flower for quite a while. Not sure what it was trying to do.
This is common carpenter bee Xylocopa confusa. It was buzzing from flower to flower, collecting nectar diligently and pollinating the flowers at the same time. Not an easy subject for photography, it was just too mobile and acrobatic on the flowers.
This dragonfly really loved to perch on the grass blade despite I disturbed it a few times, hoping it would perch on a twig or something that I could shoot with a clean background. According to Tang, this is an immature male of Orthetrum luzonicum.This female was much more cooperative and it came back to the same perch a few times, allowing me to get quite a number of shots in a breezy condition. Tang has identified this as a female Trithemis festiva which is less frequently seen compared to the male. She was so tame that I could even get a close-up shot of the head. Dragonfly's head has biting mouthparts and a pair of large compound eyes.
I have never seen such a small fly before. If not its reflective wings under the morning sun, I would have missed it. In the field, it was difficult to notice its beautiful colours of the head and body.
It was my first time trekking along this stretch of the forest fringe. I didn't meet any jogger or cyclist so I wondered where I would end up at. Finally, I came to a familiar place which I visited quite frequently where I found two Hypolimnas anomala anomala (Malayan Eggfly). This pristine female was puddling on the tarred road.
This is form nivas which is rarer and different from the above shot. Pity that the forewing was a bit torn.
A solitary male Cruiser (Vidula dejone erotella ) was found perching and resting on a leaf, occasionally sunbathing with his wings fully opened. I have not seen and photographed a female for a very long time. If he were a she, it would really make my day.
It has been a busy and hectic week for me at my work place so I have not been diligent in writing and updating this blog. I will feature some not very common buttefly species that I shot in the forest from this particular outing in my next post.

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