Saturday, December 15, 2012

Happy Holidays!

          This morning I hit the road to the great state of Utah! I won't be returning to Fresno until early January, so there may not be any posts until then. However, for the sake of this blog's development, I'd like to share a photo of a rather attractive Jewel beetle my dear friend, Johnny, captured and saved for me during one of his retreats to Shaver Lake. Shaver Lake also happens to be one of my favorite places to hunt for bugs, here in the Central Valley.



Chalcophora angulicollis
LeConte


This is obviously a larger Bup than not, but what makes this bug even more special is that it is the only species of it's genus (Chalcophora) that is well established in the western U.S. C. liberta is one to consider, but only makes it to Texas from the east coast, while C. angulicollis ranges from British Columbia south to California, west to South Dakota and Texas. It's safe to say it generally hangs out west of the Rocky Mountains.

The fellow must have been present on that fatal summer day because the Shaver Lake area (and much of the Sierra's, respectably) contain one of it's larval host plants: Ponderosa Pine (Pinus ponderosa). In fact, it was apparently rescued (or rather, stolen) from a pile of wood blocks with a bystanding group of boys deciding how they were going to kill it. Many thanks to Johnny for standing tall, and killing it first, purposefully.



A similar spot as where the specimen above was found.



Branch pile that was successful in attracting Buprestis lyrata,
and is also capable of producing Chalcophora angusticollis.
The two Jewel beetles share the same host: Ponderosa Pine.

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