It gets worse (better?). Those frisky Asian Lady Beetles (Harmonia axyridis), stars of a previous post, are at it again. But this time they’ve brought a male Convergent Lady Beetle (Hippodamia convergens) along for the ride.
It’s nice to see a California native (though widely exported as a pest-control agent) on top, even if he is a bit too typically misguided.
I would not expect viable offspring to result from a Harmonia x Hippodamia mating, though my knowledge of the breeding biology of beetles is rather slim.
I also came across a Harmonia larva, mowing down aphids on a Fava:
Much commentary on the Pharyngula prop centered upon negative impacts resulting from the introduction of the Asian Lady (H. axyridis). No doubt may Harmonia may well turn out to be the beetle equivalent of the starling or mongoose. Still, I have to confess a personal respect for these super-predators after watching larva and adult alike carve swathes through pulsating flocks of aphids.
I also stumbled across a mating Crane Fly (family Tipulidae) couple adopting a more exotic position in the onion rows:
Crane Flies are throbbing here in California just as they are in Maryland and surely much of the Northern Hemisphere. Better Crane Fly pics and much more, including a stacking of Japanese Beetles that puts the ladybugs to shame, can be found at the Bug Love portion of whatsthatbug.com.
I’m still standing on the elytra of goliaths.