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Yesterday I found a delightful GIF of a lady beetle spreading its wings and launching into flight. It is slowed down enough so you can see the details and I just had to share it!

via GIPHY

What is going on?

A lady beetle keeps its flapping wings -- which are membranous and flexible -- tucked under the harder top (elytra). To fly, it holds the elytra up out of the way. So cool!

 

(Illustration from Wikimedia)

 

Now, back to my regular programming.

In the past I've posted an end of the year list of my favorite photographs. This year let's mix it up with a matching quiz. Can you match the adult insect with its immature stage or something associated with it? If you want to, leave your results in the comments. Bonus points for correct identifications. Note: Not all letters have been used. All the photos are from 2020.

Adult Insects:

A. She's a big-eyed beauty on a stick.

B. This mimic may fool you because it resembles another popular insect.

C. Often seen visiting flowers.

D. Flies away to the mountains in the summer.

K. The hardest of all, although the answer is here in the blog.

Now match the adults with their life stages or products.

F.  Has a very specific host plant.

G. Sitting on a tree trunk.

H. Hungry, hungry.

I. What life stage is this?

L. Not an insect, but produced by insects.

Have fun!

(The answers are now posted.)

What has happened to Bug of the Week? Where has it been? This summer and fall it has been excessively hot and dry. The heat and lack of water has been hard on the trees, hard on the insects, just plain hard.

This week, however, there's been a break in the weather.

Convergent lady beetle at Boyce Thompson Arboretum.

Surprise!

It's great to be back.

Have you found any insects where you live this week?