I found this good-sized crane fly in the road on July 1, 2013. It had apparently been banged up by a near-miss from a car, so it wasn’t in any shape to flee.
Its most striking feature is its large, branched, antler-like antennae.
Sandy was digging a post-hole in the yard on June 29, 2013, and Sam happened to notice this fine, large beetle falling into the hole.
It is clearly predatory. Those mandibles are obviously best suited for, say, dicing caterpillars and slugs into bite-sized chunks.
I was walking in the woods to the northwest of the house with the girls on June 2, 2013, when we quite literally stumbled across this big anthill. As in, Rosie tripped over it. So, I made a note of the location, and came back later with a camera and a ruler. The mound was a mixture of dirt and bits of dead grass, with live grass growing in it. It stood about six inches tall, and was about a foot wide.
Here’s an attractive little true bug that I found crawling on the outside wall of the garage on May 19, 2013
Its jet-black body with white trim running around the edges and down the legs is quite elegant, don’t you think?
In 2013, it took until May 15 for the pond in the woods out back to thaw enough to go netting for aquatic insects. One kind that is easy to find early in the season, is these caddisfly larvae. These three were in a single scoop of the net. The bottom of that pond must be absolutely crawling with them.
So here we are, back in Michigan. On May 17, 2013 we decided to have another look at the contents of the little pond back in the woods. So, we were poking around on the shore, and Sandy spotted an odd orange object in the weeds. Which we promptly netted, and found to be – A Leech! A big one!