Thursday, July 12, 2012
Another Apodemia species of Metalmarks, far-West Texas
Palmer's Metalmark (Apodemia palmeri)
I really have an affinity towards this genus.
Heidi pointed out a pair of palmeri nectaring on a flowering mesquite, on Maravillas Ranch. This property is ~ 15-20 miles south of Marathon, Brewster Co., TX, as the Brushfoot flies.
Remember, another Apodemia species was found earlier on this property, Apodemia duryi or Mexican Metalmark. Click that sentence for a link to pics.
Also recall, Maravillas Ranch is the featured private ranch tour with excellent bird guides (maybe butterflies too...) during the Birds and Butterflies of the Big Bend festival. It's coming up SOON. Click here.
For diagnostic ID on A. palmeri, we are looking particularly for ORANGE MARGINS on the uppersides of all four wings.
Palmer's Metalmark generally flies at least 2 broods over spring to fall. This is the first-of-the-year (FOY) for this observer. Hopefully, then, we will continue to see them a while longer.
The species hostplant is known to be mesquites.
We have plenty of mesquites in certain areas. Remember, there were two on this particular mesquite (one was fairly worn). Maybe the female will ovi-posit, place eggs, on that very one.
Very cool bug.
As was the specific individual bird species we were following as it was singing...
Heidi pointed out this butterfly while we were following the bird.
We are looking forward to seeing folks in just about a week at the festival the Gage Hotel and Gage Gardens are hosting! And whenever y'all are in the Marathon and Brewster Co. area, let us know!
Have a good evening.
It was a great day.