23 de noviembre de 2023

1000-species-challenge 2023 - finished!

On my moth walk last night I found a lifer, which I identified as Chrysodeixis chalcites and which was confirmed shortly after by @einheit21 . This was # 1000!
First of all a big thank you to all 588 identifiers, without which of course this challenge wouldn't have been possible!

Here are the statistics (in brackets the numbers of the 1st September)
Mammals: 10 (9)
Birds: 170 (165)
Reptiles: 10 (10)
Amphibians: 3 (3)
Actinopterygii: 33 (32)
Elasmobranchii: 1 (1)
Tunicata: 1 (1)

-> Chordata: 228

Hymenoptera: 33 (29)
Diptera: 16 (12)
Hemiptera: 62 (58)
Lepidoptera: 224 (150)
Coleoptera: 104 (96
Orthoptera: 9 (7)
Odonata: 24 (20)
Blattodea: 3 (2)
Mantodea: 5 (4)
Neuroptera: 3 (3)
Embioptera: 1 (0)
Archaeognatha: 1 (1)

-> Insects: 485

Mollusca: 51 (32)
Polychaeta: 2 (2)
Arachnida: 34 (28)
Crustacea: 16 (14)
Myriapoda: 2 (1)
Cnidaria: 7 (7)
Echinodermata: 3 (3)
Porifera: 1 (1)

-> Animals total: 829

Fungi: 5 (5)
Plantae: 162 (146)
Bacteria: 1 (1)
Chromista: 2 (2)
Protozoa: 1 (1)

I won’t be able to take on a new challenge like 1000 animals or 1000 species of Spain, but I’ll continue the year and see where I stand on New Year’s Eve.
Recently especially my nightly moths walks have been really successful and I wonder how many more new moths I can find.

Publicado el 23 de noviembre de 2023 12:26 por susanne-kasimir susanne-kasimir | 1 observación | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

02 de noviembre de 2023

1000-species-challenge 2023 - October update

The squirrel was busy and so I can proudly present 954 species now. Now it does seem possible to reach my goal. There are still some species with "needs ID" of which I am sure, which haven't been confirmed yet.
Since I mainly made nightly walks in October, most of the new species are moths. And there are still lifer moths!
I fear I will be running out of new moths soon though, so will have to find another diverse group.
Some October highlights:

Publicado el 2 de noviembre de 2023 00:17 por susanne-kasimir susanne-kasimir | 7 observaciones | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

04 de octubre de 2023

1000-species-challenge 2023 - update

So today, 4th October, I am at 890 species; there are 89 days left in the year and 110 species to find. I can only comment this with a German saying which is translated into something like this:" Tediously the squirrel gathers its food." (Mühsam ernährt sich das Eichhörnchen).
I have realised that the best option to find something new are moths, so I am doing nightly walks around town and look at lit facades. Here is last night's favourite: Cymbalophora pudica.
The squirrel survives and I hope I will also reach my goal.

Publicado el 4 de octubre de 2023 09:08 por susanne-kasimir susanne-kasimir | 1 observación | 4 comentarios | Deja un comentario

01 de septiembre de 2023

1000-species-challenge 2023

I was challenged by @ogeukord to participate in his challenge of finding 1000 species which are identified to species with RG-label. At first I said, oh no, I don't want to - especially since I would also have to care about plants - but, yes, of course I am looking at my numbers. So high time to make it official. ;-)
Especially since he has already reached his goal and is now aspiring for 1000 beasts.

I have so far reached 850 species, which means I still have to find more than one per day for the rest of the year.
In May I was in Germany for three weeks, which has boosted my list, but since I came back it has been extremely dry and hot. That means that some of the early summer (insect) species had already disappeared, but also I didn't find as much as usual since I didn't make 10 h/ 15 km hikes. What is nicely reflected in my list is the weekly trip to the beach with snorkelling.
Here is an overview:
Mammals: 9
Birds: 165
Reptiles: 10
Amphibians: 3
Actinopterygii: 32
Elasmobranchii: 1
Tunicata: 1

-> Chordata: 221

Mollusca: 32
Polychaeta: 2
Arachnida: 28
Crustacea: 14
Myriapoda: 1
Hymenoptera: 29
Diptera: 12
Hemiptera: 58
Lepidoptera: 150
Coleoptera: 96
Orthoptera: 7
Odonata: 20
other insects (Blattodea, Mantodea, Neuroptera, Archaeognatha): 9

-> insects: 381

Cnidaria: 7
Echinodermata: 3
Porifera: 1

-> animals total: 695

Fungi: 5
Plantae: 146
others (Bacteria, Chromista, Protozoa): 4
Here is the link to the RG species:

And if you want to help me reach my goal, here are the observations that still need ID:

Publicado el 1 de septiembre de 2023 10:34 por susanne-kasimir susanne-kasimir | 2 comentarios | Deja un comentario

08 de marzo de 2023

(Un)identified Caterpillars on Brassicaceae: Evergestis isatidalis

I have recently seen a lot of caterpillars of the same species that I can't identify and will collect all the observations here.

2023/02/25: I found a nest of caterpillars in a web spun around the flower heads of some Brassicaceae:

2023/02/25: This is the foodplant, where the caterpillars were found.

2023/02/25: another plant, which I believe is the same species, flowering

2023/03/01: Photos during the day of caterpillars inside their nest

2023/03/07: I saw bigger caterpillars on the same plants at night, one was hanging from a silk thread (as a means of hiding from me)

I think I can safely assume that it is Evergestis isatidalis, since I've seen these photos:
The plant has meanwhile been identified as Sinapis alba

Publicado el 8 de marzo de 2023 10:52 por susanne-kasimir susanne-kasimir | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

06 de octubre de 2022

How to identify the four large Mantodea-species of Spain

Family Mantidae
Mantis religiosa

Family Mantidae
Sphodromantis viridis

Family Eremiaphilidae
Iris oratoria

Can be mainly identified by the absence of characteristic features (no spots in armpits, no line through eye, no white spot on wing)

Family Empusidae
Empusa pennata

It is so different that it can’t be mistaken for anything else. (There is the very similar Empusa fasciata in the Eastern Mediterranean, but in Spain it is unique.)
Female - with threadlike antennae
Male - with pennate antennae

The same as PDF with photos: https://www.icloud.com/iclouddrive/0b4hxyyA8TK64zF7STmfZck8w#Mantodea-pdf

Publicado el 6 de octubre de 2022 21:11 por susanne-kasimir susanne-kasimir | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

21 de enero de 2022

My Daily Beast 2021

In 2021 I made the New Year's resolution to do some exercise every day. Since I'm not into sports I decided to go for a walk and take a photo of an animal every day and thus make an iNaturalist streak. I also posted my finds on a German nature forum and there it somehow changed into finding a different species every day.
I am privileged to live in the south of Spain, there is probably a higher number of species than in Germany for example. Since I don't have a car my radius was rather limited. After I got vaccinated I did make regular bus trips to the vicinity, mainly in the province of Málaga.
I took photos with a Panasonic Lumix FZ82 with a 60 x zoom and in August I bought a used Olympus Tough TG6 for better macros. Since it is waterproof I also started snorkelling and was surprised what you can find at a "family beach" in the middle of Málaga. By the end of October when it became increasingly unlikely to find anything new during the day, I switched to nightly walks and looked out for moths on lit facades or shop windows.
In short, an otherwise boring year without holidays or larger trips turned out to be quite entertaining and challenging. I found a lot of species new to me and especially the snorkelling and moths opened up completely new habitats. I didn't lose any weight, though.
I tagged the chosen species of the day with "mydailybeast2021" and finally I made a photo book out of it.

Publicado el 21 de enero de 2022 10:57 por susanne-kasimir susanne-kasimir | 6 comentarios | Deja un comentario

11 de abril de 2020

Observation on Pieris brassicae with parasite Cotesia glomerata during lockdown

On Wednesday, 7.4.20 during Covid-19 lockdown (in Spain you are not even allowed to go for a walk alone!) while I was going shopping I noticed two caterpillars of Pieris brassicae and decided to take them home to observe. I also ripped out some Brassicaceae and planted it in a pot in my patio. The weed seemed rather withered and the caterpillars didn't move much, so I didn't take a photo on the first day.
On Friday, 10.4. morning I finally did:
caterpillar 1: observation 41898885
caterpillar 2: observation 41833395
and was very surprised in the afternoon when I found yellow cocoons attached to one of the larvae.
caterpillar 1: observation 41833397
Unfortunately I didn't see the coming out. The other larvae also hasn't moved, so might be up to the same fate.

Update: 11.4. 17:30 It was, and this time I was more on time!
observation 41908857 of caterpillar 2 at 14:47

Update: 12.4. The zombie caterpillars are still moving occasionally. They have both arched themselves around the cocoons in a kind of "protective" way. Spooky!

Update: 13.4. Just to prove my point, they are now both sitting head up
caterpillar 1: observation 42078327
caterpillar 2: observation 42078328

on the 18.4. one of the caterpillars fell down and died, on the next day the other one as well. I assumed that this is more or less the time the wasps need for pupation and feared they hadn't survived. The weather had been - and continues to be - rather cool and very rainy.
27.4. Nonetheless today I noticed two wasps on the cocoons!: observation 43855843

Update 28.4. Today emerged the wasps of the second caterpillar. I find it especially interesting to see the open lids of the cocoons.
observation 44300609

Publicado el 11 de abril de 2020 11:32 por susanne-kasimir susanne-kasimir | 8 observaciones | 2 comentarios | Deja un comentario