Friday, February 12, 2010

A Good Outing @ Lornie Trail

I could not join a ButterflyCircle group outing on Saturday (6 Feb). However, I did manage to free up about 2 hours around noon, searching for butterflies and other insects at Lornie Trail.

The scorching heat dissipated almost instantly the moment I stepped on the forest trail. Thanks to the forest canopy which provides us sufficient shade. First terrestrial animal I saw was two Psyche butterflies ( 纤粉蝶, Leptosia nina malayana). They were constantly fluttering very casually near the ground, welcoming me visiting their home. Usually, I would not stop long waiting for them to perch. But, I was lucky I turned my head back to take a second look at them and realised that one of them was resting on a grass blade.This was my first sighting of a Pierid butterfly feeding on bird droppings. I rarely encountered Psyche staying so still, a golden opportunity for me to snap a few more shots from different angles. Wow, what a good start for my outing as the memory of my last shot of a Psyche in the wild has already been erased completely. Usually I encountered and shot open-winged Malay Viscount (Tanaecia pelea pelea), a very common species in our forest. I was fortunate to see two of them, a male and a female, puddling on the ground. This is my first shot of the underside of a female. There were fewer joggers on the trail during lunch hours otherwise I would not be so lucky to get these shots. Chestnut Bob (Iambrix salsala salsala ) is rather common and widely spread. However, I have seen this slightly different Chestnut Bob quite frequently at a particular location. Yes, I have an interesting conjecture in my mind now. Perhaps this may be a Starry Bob (Iambrix stellifer) after all. I am not sure if this is another species of Micropezid Fly. It has a "tail" sticking out from its abdomen and is larger than the common Micropezid Fly that we usually encounter in the forest. This is another species of fly, perhaps a kind of Soldier Fly. A few of them were found in the shade along the trail. An interesting posture - raising its abdomen while sticking out its front leg.

Do you think the small spider in the webs would draw your attention ? The answer is no for me. It was the glittering webs under the sun that arouse my curiosity. This is a close-up shot of the spider. I have no idea what species it is.
Another very interesting looking spider appeared to be taking a nap.
It was a very fruitful outing for me in which I managed to get some "firsts". Today is the eve of a new year - Year of the Tiger on the lunar calendar. Here I wish every reader of the blog a fruitful and healthy Year of the Tiger ahead.

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