Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Summer of 2013 Beetle of the Season: Omus laevis

      This was a notable year for collecting. I went from a six drawer collection to a ten drawer collection and improved upon my collecting and identifying skills along with my general understanding of North American beetles. I have had some time to practice blogging (including writing, spelling and grammar) and photography, with this I have adopted another routine idea and task; "Beetle of the Season". This will be a quarterly post containing the chosen bug of honor at each season's end. For simplicity's sake, I have distinguished the four seasons as follows:

Spring     = March-May
Summer  = June-August
Fall         = September-November
Winter    = December-February

I have seen and admired similar practices (weekly to yearly) on several other blogs and thought it would be fun to start a trademark of my own. It just so happens to be the end of the Summer section of the year, and after sifting through the respective summer photographs, I have decided that Omus laevis is a worthy title holder for Summer Beetle of 2013.

Omus laevis LeConte, 1866
Summer of 2013 Beetle of the Season.

This beastly tiger beetles is indigenous to the Sierra Nevada and I have been fortunate to collect it on two different occasions in handsome numbers. The first time was at Courtright Reservoir; I, at the moment, thought is to be the variable O. californicus so I didn't bother going through the effort of getting a good photograph. Once I found out it was what a new revision of the genus would recognize as O. laevis, I became much more interested in the "O. californicus" species clump. Luckily, I later encountered a high-elevation population several miles off from the first locality that was active at what would be considered the end of its activity period. I was then able to get a few photographs and make some observations concerning their nocturnal habits.

Because of my favoritism within the Class of Insecta, I will also be starting a "The Non-Beetle Bug of the Year" at the first of 2014. This will also hopefully be compatible with my resolution to learn of, photograph, collect and write about other insects.

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