The Wasn’t Winter

Balmy temperatures keep grass green and growing.  Bats fly nearly every night.  Some trees budded as early as the first week of February.  And insects remain active and obvious.  Welcome to the wasn’t winter.

A southern lappet moth (Phyllodesma occidentis) hanging on a screen (IMG_0041)

Southern lappet moths (Phyllodesma occidentis) join crane flies and beetles and wasps and bees, along with a laundry list of insects, all of which remain quite active and obvious.

A Southern lappet moth (Phyllodesma occidentis) hanging on a screen (IMG_0052)

The lack of major freezes this season portends a bad mosquito problem, not to mention other unpleasant critters.  And if it indicates anything about future temperatures—as in regarding this summer—then the news is bad indeed, especially in light of last summer’s record heat and misery.

Close-up of a male luna moth (Actias luna) resting on the ground (IMG_0041_l)

But luna moths (Actias luna) are always welcome visitors, just like the other unusual winter guests, so I won’t complain.

Close-up of dew on the wing of a luna moth (Actias luna) (IMG_0043)

Well, I won’t complain much I mean, since I love cold temperatures and wintry weather, neither of which we’ve had this year.

Close-up of a luna moth (Actias luna) resting on the ground (IMG_0066)

As we head into spring, the weather need not change to indicate a new season, and it’s clear insects are more than ready for the end of the wasn’t winter.

3 thoughts on “The Wasn’t Winter”

  1. Mild winter up in the Ozarks too, not so mild that the insects didn’t disappear, but still much milder than usual. I haven’t seen a Luna yet, but a couple of Southern Lappets showed up last night. And, based upon sampling done while repairing some fencing, our tick population is alive and active.

  2. Gorgeous photos! We’ve had moths and crane flies in our stairwell all mild winter long. We’re going to have some major drought issues here in CA. La Niña hit us hard this past year.

  3. Beautiful photos, Jason! They make me anxious to be mothing again. I was seeing and photographing an increasing number of moths while in Bisbee, but now that I’m back north in Canada, the weather is decidedly wintry. I have a feeling it will be a couple of more weeks before I see many moths.

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