Texas bugs

I started taking a botanical drawing class with Lauren Levato (you can still sign up this week) which has me on high alert for all kinds of insects in addition to butterflies.

Photo copyright Maike's Marvels

While I was in Texas, we visited the Mercer Arboretum and Botanic Garden. Open daily from 8 am to 5 pm, the park offers a lovely outdoor mini-adventure. One side shows different types of gardens in a manicured setting. Across Aldine-Westfield, the park extends to a nature preserve with picnic areas and playgrounds.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

An Eastern Tiger Swallowtail swooped by us on a regular basis throughout our walk, but it only settled down once at a not-so-photogenic angle.

Photo copyright Maike's Marvels

We eyed a lovely Checkerspot (I think).

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

I also spotted a hairstreak but the photo didn’t turn out too well. A grasshopper crossed our path.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

I’m guessing this is a Pearly-Eye.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

The name of this funny creature eludes me.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

A Buckeye.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

And two small ones getting it on.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

Dragonflies also buzzed around.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

Just as we exited the preserve, a Squash Bug swooped onto a branch (I called it a “Holy Schnickerdoodle” when I first saw it).

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

Another type of assassin bug, Zelus longpipes, wandered over my brother’s barbecue in the garden.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

The roadside was radiant with Indian Blankets.

photo copyright Maike's Marvels

Amateur entomology is quite entertaining. I will tell you more about this extension to my lepidoptera interest later on.

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