Snowberry Clearwing Hummingbird Moth

15 08 2012

Late this afternoon as I was heading out to run an errand, I just happened to have my Coolpix L110 around my neck and saw this Snowberry Clearwing Hummingbird Moth (Hemaris diffinis) fly past me. It landed on a Bearded iris leaf and stayed there for at least five minutes! I fired off a few shots from a distance of about two feet and then switched to macro mode on the L110 and moved in closer. I was able to shoot these from about seven inches away and the moth just stayed there, virtually motionless. I was able to knock off about 20 different shots (from directly behind the insect, then moving to capture a side view) until it flew away.

I’ve photographed this type of insect two other times (one in my garden here and one in Wisconsin here), but have never had one stop in one place. Before today, I had never been able to see the detail in the wings because they always seem to be in motion (much like a hummingbird, actually!). I would have preferred to diffuse the sunlight to lessen the harsh shadows, but sometimes you have to play the hand you’re dealt (or dance with the one what brung ya, or something to that effect).

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





The elusive Snowberry Clearwing Hummingbird Moth (Hemaris diffinis)

3 09 2011

I photographed this type of moth in my own garden years ago (here), and the image was what I call a “record shot,” just like this one is. A “record shot” won’t win any prizes—it is simply captured to record its existence and uniqueness, no matter the technical quality or stellar composition.

I wanted to share this shot anyway, since this creature is so elusive, very quick and hard to photograph. I photographed this Snowberry Clearwing Hummingbird Moth (Hemaris diffinis) frantically feasting on the blooms of a ‘Franz Schubert’ Phlox (Phlox paniculata) at the Spooner Agricultural Research Station in Spooner, Wisconsin.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.





100,000 hits!

4 10 2009

I was checking my blog stats and discovered that my busiest day ever was Wednesday, May 6, 2009, with a total of 440 hits. And 46 of those were for my Cabbage White Butterfly camouflage posting—must have been a lot of curious bug spotters that day!

To celebrate this milestone of 100,000 hits, I offer the following:

1. Oddest word searches that brought visitors to my blog:

kids running to touch wood  (a good old-fashioned—and legal—way to pass time)
beard of bees  (no thank you)
daylilies bugs hug   (aww….)
zoo-dutch dog with 2 ladies (1)  (huh?)
waffle house dirty    (hate it when that happens)
polaroid skull     (!)
hermaphrodite plant ruin    (I dare not ask.)
I never saw a purple cow what does it mean    (We’ll probably never really know.)
baby robin dying? crying   (Yep, that would be me doing the crying.)
cool stuff for 20 bucks    (Where? Where????)
gluten free elephant ears    (Didn’t know you could eat them!)
And then there’s the SPAM that gets filtered…    (…and sometimes it doesn’t)
Above-board! Just looking for you highly priced!   (Lost in translation)
young illegal booty content    (Again, I dare not ask.)
what is the flower is blue with 4 pedals   (A flower with pedals? How mobile it could be!)
when the cactus dies my love for you die   (Easy fix. Just don’t overwater.)
can you get high from a magnolia bud    (What? Morning glory seeds didn’t do it for ya?)
i shot myself flower    (Again—what’s up with the violence + flower stuff?)
now, that’s more like it ebay    (eBay sucks for sellers)
things cost an arm a leg or a soul    (Never bought anything that cost my soul!)
puppy girls feet wall paper    (That sounds like an HGTV decorating disaster.)
pups don’t shed for sale   (would make a very good name for a rock band)
sequim booty    (Hmm….Sequim, Washington? Known for booty? Who woulda thunk?)
elephant foot yam butterflies moths   (okay, way too much going on in this search)
cialis cindy   (alright already…enough with the cialis and viagara, spammers!)
legged fish wiki   
20 bucks    (I’ll take it!)
puppy road    (Puppy road, take me home, to the place where I belong, West Virginia…)
duck herding women    (I knew animals would take over one day, I just knew it!)
away morning
bulletin board idea for peek a boo   
tiny little bugs in kitchen denver  
fairmont empress + “bed bugs” 
spring rose sex
very little girl!   

________________________________________________________________________________

2. Top 10 posts of all time on this blog (click on post name to view):

Concrete leaf casting: 4,094 viewers

Color Magic Rose: 2,017 viewers

Crafty room divider screen: 1,730 viewers

Stuff About Me: 1,602 viewers

Snowberry Clearwing Hummingbird Moth: 806 viewers

Heavenly blue: 704 viewers

Gigglebean with parrot and sugar glider: 661 viewers

Spotlight on Abbie!: 626 viewers

Mina Lobata (Spanish Flag): 576 viewers

Monarch butterfly habitat poster: 536 viewers

________________________________________________________________________________

3. Top 10 referrers:

my2008blog.wordpress.com: 421 referrals  (Thanks, Birgitte!)

contradica.blogspot.com: 265 referrals  (Thanks, Abbie!)

penick.net/digging: 181 referrals  (Thanks, Pam!)

phillipoliver.blogspot.com: 178 referrals  (Thanks, Phillip!)

auntdebbisgarden.blogspot.com: 128 referrals  (Thanks, Debbi!)

mommymirandamusings.blogspot.com: 107 referrals  (Thanks, Heather!)

moresecretwhispers.wordpress.com: 99 referrals  (Thanks, Chloe!)

www.fotoblography.com: 87 referrals  (Thanks, Andy!)

www.outerchat.com: 86 referrals  (Thanks, Senthill!)

www.stphoto.wordpress.com: 62 referrals  (Thanks, Scott!)

________________________________________________________________________________

4. Top 10 links that visitors went to from my blog:

Concrete garden leaves: 1,196 clicks

Color Magic Rose photo: 698 clicks

Martha Stewart’s website: 654 clicks

Making a leaf casting: 641 clicks

Little and Lewis (concrete casting artists): 472 clicks

Jacquard Products (again, concrete casting related link!): 408 clicks

Ellis Hollow Blog (yet another concrete leaf cast related link): 213 clicks

My “Punch O Color” photo collage: 203 clicks

Photo collage of my garden club doing concrete casting: 200 clicks

PDF download of Abbie Cranmer’s feature article in Hearing Loss Magazine: 196 clicks

________________________________________________________________________________

I’ve been remiss in posting as often as I normally do. Work and other commitments called and something had to be set aside. To my regular and most loyal visitors, I offer a plea for leniency (and patience). I’ll be back soon with a plethora of postings, I promise! (In fact, I see that my white Japanese anemones have begun to bloom in the front yard…might they be my next subject?)





Snowberry Clearwing Hummingbird Moth

29 08 2007

Now that’s a mouthful, ain’t it? I was just out cleaning up the front yard garden (if one can even call it a garden at this point…I can’t believe how many weeds I’ve let sprout!) and while trimming the dead parts out of our purple butterfly bush, I spotted this little guy and knew it was a hummingbird moth (Debbi taught me about them a few years ago when we spotted one in the back yard). I grabbed my camera and got a few (mostly blurry shots—they’re not called hummingbirds for nothing). Here are the best shots I could get…you can barely see the “clearwings” because it was moving so fast. I identified it through several websites…the snowberry clearwing is the smallest of the hummingbird moths.

From my research:
Clearwing moths, the group to which the hummingbird and bumblebee mimics belong, lose the scales on their front wings after their first flight. Their wings resemble leaded stained glass with clear glass in the panels, much like a bee or wasp wing. The snowberry clearwing is often mistaken for a bumblebee. Not only does this clearwing have yellow and black bands, it also hovers and flits from flower to flower while sipping nectar.

Adults fly throughout the day in open woodlands and fields, as well as in gardens and suburbs throughout the state, between late March and September. This bumblebee mimic is yellow with black wings and abdomen. At 1.25 to 2 inches, its wingspan is slightly smaller than that of the hummingbird clearwing. Its larvae feed on honeysuckle, dogbane and buckbrush. Adults eat from many flowers, including thistles, milkweed and lilac.

If you want to learn more about this critter, click on the link below:

http://www.birds-n-garden.com/snowberry_clearwing_hummingbird_moths.html

snowberry-clearwing2.jpg

© 2007 Cindy Dyer, All rights reserved.