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Topic: Treehoppers from Ecuador | Author: boghaunter1 | Replies: 7 | Views: 48
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Re: Treehoppers from Ecuador

by Trehopr1 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 8:51 pm

Hello John, I would be very happy to show images of some of the treehoppers that I have encountered both (domestic and foreign)

That is the first mention of a Membracidae guide/book that I have heard of and, I sure will have to look into that matter. I believe, it likely covers how to identify (at least) many of the various (genera) encountered amongst the South American fauna. Cannot imagine a guide of any kind delving much further...

For the most part Membracids should be (pointed) unless they truly are large enough to accept a number one pin. Anything with an elaborate pronotum should be pointed because these structures are hollow and as you mentioned are easily broken off. Pointing is quite easy and I do it with over 90% of the hoppers that I encounter.

It's nice to know that other enthusiasts still find an intriguing fascination with these mostly small sized fellows !! 👏🎉☺️
Topic: Mini-monsters... | Author: Trehopr1 | Replies: 4 | Views: 31
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Re: Mini-monsters...

by Trehopr1 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 7:43 pm

What conversation about "mini-monsters" of the
underworld would be complete without some mention
of those hairy, imposing, or even frightening eight
legged terrors --- the tarantulas of the family
Theraphosidae.

Who could ever imagine that we now have over 900
identified species of "hairy mygalomorphs" known
thus far from the world over ? Just this one family !
Everyone is familiar with these brutes of the spider
world and there is certainly a strong following of
enthusiasts who breed, nuture, and seek new knowledge
of this wonderful -- albeit scary-looking family.

Of coarse, I brought up this topic to highlight some of
the little known, seldom discussed, and often over-
looked creatures that (may) go "bump in the night" if
they happen to find themselves in your occupied
dwelling.

Of all the tarantula species known the largest from
South America always garner great attention. These
imposing giants belong to such genera as Theraphosa,
Pseudotheraphosa, Lasiodora, and Pamphobeteus.
Their fangs are usually between 3/4 and 1 inch in length
and their disposition is usually disagreeable.

These really don't make for great "pets" and tarantulas
(in general) are known to be notorius escape artists. So,
these big ones are either best left alone or left to only
the MOST experienced enthusiast.

Below, I present to you representatives of the 2 largest
species. The two at the top are a (pair) of Pseudotheraphosa
apophysis -- Male (left/w. pedipalps) and Female (right).
Below/centered: Theraphosa leblondi (female)

Image

Image

Image

Image

My take between the two species is that T. leblondi is
slightly more "stocky" in build and a heftier beast
(weight-wise) than P. apophysis. The two species are
readily differentiated when spiderlings however, in time
both become chestnut-brown in color and equal in size.
Males of both species have longer/thinner legs than the
females and evident pedipalps (for reproduction).

These are wild collected examples procured by a tarantula
enthusiast/breeder whom I had chance to know. The bottom
example (reddish abdomen) is missing its thick coat of guard
hairs as she was kept for a time as a "pet" and was an active
"hair flicker" at every instance.
Topic: Treehoppers from Ecuador | Author: boghaunter1 | Replies: 7 | Views: 48
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Re: Treehoppers from Ecuador

by boghaunter1 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 6:41 pm

Glad you liked it Trehopr! I recall in a former forum? you showed us some of your collection of treehoppers. Any chance you could again refresh our memories with some pics of your favourite local/most exotic/bizarre spp.? (group photos as you like, not individual?, as way too much effort I would think...).

Also I am amazed that these strange insects are able to fly successfully while looking so incredibly top heavy! The video says there may be 10,000+ spp. worldwide & that they have been around for 40 million years.... AMAZING indeed! Their often common, mutual association with ants who look after/protect them for their sweet honeydew secretions, same as ants do with aphids, is also very interesting. Over many years I have only collected (ashamedly...Haha!) a couple specimens (as by catch) of what I think are commonly known as "Buffalo" hoppers (square headed with tiny horns in front resembling a buffalo's head). Trehopr/anyone...you don't happen to know of (or own) the book on treehoppers that the lady worldwide expert on the video authored?..; would love to obtain a copy on this obscure insect group.

Another rather strange question? Larger spp. without bizarre horns etc. can be pinned as normal, but what about the really tiny, incredibly bizarre ones... are they pointed/carded/micro pinned/alcohol?... I can't imagine trying to push a springy #0 - #000 -#1 pin through those amazing thorax adornments without wrecking them.

John K.
Topic: Treehoppers from Ecuador | Author: boghaunter1 | Replies: 7 | Views: 48
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Re: Treehoppers from Ecuador

by Trehopr1 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 4:59 pm

Wow !!
What a great video on my beloved side interest.
Thank you sincerely John for posting this video which I have never seen. I am familiar with Stuart (from the Smithsonian) and he is one of the foremost authorities on Membracidae.

The video is wonderful in that it encompasses an entire adventure which unfolds whilst looking for these strange creatures from the inner sphere. It is enjoyable throughout and it shows some of the other researchers involved in the various other aspects of treehopper research.

I noticed a fair number of genera (which I am familiar with) but, there were some that were new to me. I still love these little "brownies" of the insect world and I have a "side" collection of unit trays/drawers dedicated to this specialized interest.

Most of what I have (of course) is of things that I've been able to personally collect from here in my home state. However, I have managed to pick up around 20+ exotic species through the years from offerings on eBay and trips I've made to Ecuador and Bolivia.

Unfortunately, I had to give up the matter of purchasing them from sellers about 4 years ago as the pricing on them "spiked" enormously and pushed me out of the market.

I did see one other video produced by Stuart as well on another of his collecting expeditions and, it too was fascinating to watch and learn from.

Many, many thanks John ! 🎉👏☺️
Topic: What's up with US Saturniidae? | Author: lamprima2 | Replies: 3 | Views: 52
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Re: What's up with US Saturniidae?

by Chuck » Tue Feb 07, 2023 3:18 pm

Bill O in Canada is the clearing house, though he's older now and I've not seen anything from him in the past year. He doesn't do much raising on his own anymore but has pupae drop shipped. So he has a supplier network, they're out there. But I don't buy pupae, so don't know the players, sorry.
Topic: Does anyone have a bigger one? I mean an agrippina | Author: joachim | Replies: 17 | Views: 271
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Re: Does anyone have a bigger one? I mean an agrippina

by Chuck » Tue Feb 07, 2023 3:16 pm

It's amazing that such a huge species, known for a long time, and rather common, has a larval host that is unknown.

It's not like it's only found in remote areas, so presumably people would stumble across the larvae. That said, sometimes all it takes is asking- I caught a graphium and asked my bush guide what the larvae ate, and he pointed to the tree. He knew. Apparently nobody had bothered to ask.
Topic: Mini-monsters... | Author: Trehopr1 | Replies: 4 | Views: 31
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Re: Mini-monsters...

by kevinkk » Tue Feb 07, 2023 3:04 pm

Until you see one, those giant centipedes don't give a person a sense of the amazing size. I saw one a a reptile show, it looked like a snake.
The 1K price tag was a bit out of my budget.
Topic: Treehoppers from Ecuador | Author: boghaunter1 | Replies: 7 | Views: 48
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Re: Treehoppers from Ecuador

by kevinkk » Tue Feb 07, 2023 2:56 pm

Paul K wrote: Tue Feb 07, 2023 8:40 am
kevinkk wrote: Tue Feb 07, 2023 7:21 am I just watched a butterfly one where the narrator claimed birdwings
lived in Pakistan. He didn't even mention the Solomon islands. Not exactly what I'd call learning material, but it can be junk food.
Troides helena occurs in Pakistan.
Troides are the birdwings.
Thanks for the correction, in any event the video had a number of what I'd call issues with misleading narration. I watch a bug video now and then,
it's just disappointing to see things I know are inaccurate. That's how misinformation perpetuates.
Topic: Does anyone have a bigger one? I mean an agrippina | Author: joachim | Replies: 17 | Views: 271
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Re: Does anyone have a bigger one? I mean an agrippina

by radusho » Tue Feb 07, 2023 1:35 pm

They are not captive bred, but on several occasions massive cocoons were collected so a mumber of them was available ex pupa. Also depending on luck they probably hatch in clusters so one is able to attract om light a good quantity of freshly hatched specimens
Topic: Treehoppers from Ecuador | Author: boghaunter1 | Replies: 7 | Views: 48
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Re: Treehoppers from Ecuador

by Paul K » Tue Feb 07, 2023 8:40 am

kevinkk wrote: Tue Feb 07, 2023 7:21 am I just watched a butterfly one where the narrator claimed birdwings
lived in Pakistan. He didn't even mention the Solomon islands. Not exactly what I'd call learning material, but it can be junk food.
Troides helena occurs in Pakistan.
Troides are the birdwings.
Topic: Does anyone have a bigger one? I mean an agrippina | Author: joachim | Replies: 17 | Views: 271
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Re: Does anyone have a bigger one? I mean an agrippina

by bobw » Tue Feb 07, 2023 8:39 am

You would think that a moth of this sort of wingspan would be badly damaged after just its maiden flight. There now seem to be a lot of perfect specimens on the market so I assumed that they must be captive-bred. It comes as rather a surprise that the foodplant is not known!
Topic: Treehoppers from Ecuador | Author: boghaunter1 | Replies: 7 | Views: 48
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Re: Treehoppers from Ecuador

by kevinkk » Tue Feb 07, 2023 7:21 am

Some of those youtube videos are good, and they show interesting animals, I just watched a butterfly one where the narrator claimed birdwings
lived in Pakistan. He didn't even mention the Solomon islands. Not exactly what I'd call learning material, but it can be junk food.
Topic: What's up with US Saturniidae? | Author: lamprima2 | Replies: 3 | Views: 52
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Re: What's up with US Saturniidae?

by kevinkk » Tue Feb 07, 2023 7:14 am

I don't think any problems exist, each year is different, people don't always advertise livestock. Some times you need to post a want
ad, and even then it's a crapshoot. I've found that over the last ten years or so, a large variety of natives have been offered, it's just that
life isn't a production line, and sometimes there's a period where you have to wait for ova, rather than being able to buy diapaused material.
I'll be out this season, and something will fly in, what, where and when -
I keep a notebook of traders and just recently bought material from someone I emailed and asked if they had anything, a successful endeavor,
despite my want ads. Shipping is work, I know I don't come out ahead when I sell livestock, I suppose that's my own fault, but it's just a hobby.
I sure wouldn't import US natives from the EU, if you're desperate- try Ebay.
Topic: What's up with US Saturniidae? | Author: lamprima2 | Replies: 3 | Views: 52
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What's up with US Saturniidae?

by lamprima2 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 6:28 am

Once in a while, I purchase a few cocoons of very trivial overwintering N. American Saturniidae: H. cecropia. and A. polyphemus, just for fun. This year I can not find any. I really do not feel like importing them from UK or France. Did something happen to these species in the US, or this is just a "supply-demand" thing - a common explanation of all possible problems nowadays? Can anyone tell me the name of a reliable breeder in the US?
Topic: Does anyone have a bigger one? I mean an agrippina | Author: joachim | Replies: 17 | Views: 271
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Re: Does anyone have a bigger one? I mean an agrippina

by eurytides » Tue Feb 07, 2023 6:01 am

Here are the first instar larvae

Topic: Treehoppers from Ecuador | Author: boghaunter1 | Replies: 7 | Views: 48
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Treehoppers from Ecuador

by boghaunter1 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 5:06 am

Hello all,

Ran across this interesting video on Youtube about treehoppers... those often bizarre, tiny little plant suckers that can have amazing adornments projecting from their thoraxes. I think many of us will never get a chance to see some of these in real life & this video is quite educational & entertaining at times. I hope our own moderator member by the same avatar name gets a kick out of it ;) (unless, of course... he has already seen it!).



John K.
Topic: Mini-monsters... | Author: Trehopr1 | Replies: 4 | Views: 31
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Re: Mini-monsters...

by Trehopr1 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 4:51 am

In the dark, dank, spaces of caves, hollowed out trees,
and deep crevices of rocky outcroppings danger lurks
everywhere and hapless insects fall prey to apparitions
evolved for an existence of surprise and concealment.

Another of natures "mini-monsters" of the underworld
are the Amblypygi: an ancient order of arachnid chelicerate
arthropods (also known as whip spiders or tailless whip
scorpiones). There are presently some 17 named genera
with approximately 155 species.

Most are seldom if ever encountered by most people.
Though, harmless to humans they are intimidating-looking
creatures to encounter and most of us would likely shy
away from any chance encounter.

Members of the family Phrynidae contain some of the
real heavyweights amongst these and the genus: Phryna
in particular has several.

Here is a fairly colossal example taken in a Peruvian
cave in 1972.

Image
Topic: From pinned to riker? | Author: akraider | Replies: 3 | Views: 89
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Re: From pinned to riker?

by akraider » Tue Feb 07, 2023 4:28 am

Thanks for the reply...did you rehydrate the specimen(s) a bit before putting them in the Riker?
Topic: Papilio polyxenes gynandromorph | Author: chrisw | Replies: 10 | Views: 256
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Re: Papilio polyxenes gynandromorph

by mothman55 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 3:52 am

That has to be the best deal for $20 I have ever seen. Very unique gynandromorph.
Topic: Mini-monsters... | Author: Trehopr1 | Replies: 4 | Views: 31
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Mini-monsters...

by Trehopr1 » Tue Feb 07, 2023 12:44 am

Thru the years of my inordinate fondness for
all things multi-legged I have occasionally gone
off "on a tangent" or diverted from primary focus
to dabble a bit in things that MOST would find
un-nerving or frightful.

So, my next photograph is an example of one of
my "momentary lapses of reason" or focus.

Image

Giant centipedes or scolopenders are ferocious
predators in their realm. They are quite able-bodied
and fast enough to overpower anything that comes
close. The largest ones have no fear of tarantulas,
small rodents, snakes, or other underground dwellers.

It is well known that they are capable of delivering
a painful venomous bite that you won't forget; and,
their (general) un-nerving appearance and speed
capabilities means you don't want one getting inside
the dwelling you sleep in.

For those curious about that BIG one well, I personally
caught that superb beastie in early August 1990. It
was seen crossing a desert road in early morning in
Pedernales province. A nearby cave located amongst
a rocky "outcropping" told of the most likely abode
of this mini-monster....