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Old Jul 5, 2008, 1:31 AM   #11
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nice series. Looks like shots out of National Geographic!

glenn
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Old Jul 5, 2008, 2:36 AM   #12
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The pictures are wonderful, not so sure about the milkweed bugs. It is interesting that they seem to get together to open the pods, cooperative working. However when massed they make me think of creepy movies of giant ants and such things.
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Old Jul 5, 2008, 8:06 AM   #13
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Fascinating series, penolta. Very well photographed and the description makes it stand out even more.

Paul
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Old Jul 5, 2008, 9:00 AM   #14
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docP,
very nice!!
time line???

roy
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Old Jul 5, 2008, 11:02 AM   #15
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Wow! The bugs are kind of creepy seen that close. But, their process is amazing. I never realized that's what they did.

Patty
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Old Jul 5, 2008, 12:36 PM   #16
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Lyrics51 wrote:
Quote:
nice series. Looks like shots out of National Geographic!

glenn
Wow! That is a high complement, Glenn.

And thanks everyone for the nice comments.

Roy, as this is a guesswork(as mentioned in the introduction) and assembled "sequence,"there is no meaningful timeline.I photographedthat first bug on 5/31, the mating on 6/25 and the rest were taken in an 8 minute perios on 7/03. We saw no other adults, so obviously they (and others) were hiding somewhere (probably beneath leaves). I don't know that any or all ofthe instars (larvae) were from that one mating, as I don't know how fast they develop. You will note there are several stages reprsented in each group (all but the last one on the same plant). A member from elsewhere in California mentioned in another forum that he had seen more of these bugs this year than ever before. These are the first we have had (don't know how they got here, maybe unnoticed on nursery stock or just flying in),but it looks like we are going to have a problem this year, unless some predator (if there is one)or parasite appears.
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Old Jul 5, 2008, 1:15 PM   #17
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Very interesting Penolta. I have seen these before from time to time, though I don't know that they were ever on a milkweed plant.These were onsome ornamental flowering plant in my brother's back yard. I appreciate the ID, I had no idea what they were. Not nearly as good as your shot but here are their FL cousins:


Tim

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Old Jul 6, 2008, 7:50 PM   #18
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Looks like the same bug, Tim- any idea what kind of plant they were on?

We found a group of much smaller ones on a seed pod of another milkweed plant this morning. They are so turgid, they look like they could explode!:
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Old Aug 25, 2009, 3:45 AM   #19
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Magnificent results, got the lens, only I have to use it more.

Ronny
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Old Aug 25, 2009, 6:32 AM   #20
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Great story so well illustrated! Wonderful capture of the color and detail!
We too have these masses of milkweed bugs. Have seen similar behavior with boxelder bugs too.
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