Life on a Quarter Acre

List of first LAQ observations

22 September 2022

Eristalis flavipes (Orange-legged Drone Fly)

Found this sleeping on a goldenrod leaf on a cool, cloudy day. At first I thought this was a small bumble bee. But then I saw it was a mimic.

20 September 2022

Corimelaena sp.

A new Hemiptera family - Thyreocoridae.

9 September 2022

Epithemia sp.

A new phylum for the yard: Ochraphyta (Diatoms)

From the iron birdbath.

31 August 2022

Vorichella sp.

Found in a drop from a wildlife water bowl.

Subclass Hypotrychia (Hypotrychs)

Found in the same drop from a wildlife water bowl.

29 August 2022

Xestia c-nigrum (Lesser Black-letter Dart)

Found in light trap. Waiting for iNat confirmation, but I'm pretty sure of the ID.

Tricoptera (Caddisflies)

Another new insect order for the yard. Came to the moth trap last night.

Vanessa atalanta (Red Admiral)

Attrated to moth bait that I painted on the south birch stump last night.

28 August 2022

Thysanoptera (Thrips)

A new insect order for the yard! Found on a Feverfew flower.

24 August 2022

Melanophila sp. (A Buprestid Beeltle)

Found on asphalt driveway.

21 August 2022

Polystoechotes punctata (A Giant Lacewing)

Attracted to moth bait on south birch stump.

Asemum nitidum (A Longhorn Beetle - Cerambycidae)


Attracted to light trap.

8 August 2022

Eris militaris (Bronze Jumpimg Spider)

Jumped on me when I was near spruce stump.

1 August 2022

Upis ceramboides (Roughened Darkling Beetle)

On north birch stump after painting with sugary moth concoction.

24 July 2022

Toxomerus marginatus (Margined Calligrapher)

On a Parsley flower in the keyhole garden.

Minettia flaveola (Lauxaniid Fly)

Netted on Douglas Hawthorn. Collection only. No iNaturalist observation.

23 July 2022

Ichneumon cupitus (A Darwin Wasp)

Found on ground near hammock. Photographed, captured, and pinned.

21 July 2022

Leptomantispa pulchella (A Mantidfly)

Found on window sill. Twitter post

20 July 2022

Buprestis langii

Emerged from spruce stump. twitter post

15 July 2022

Agrilus cuprescens (Rose Stem Girder)

On raspberry leaf.

11 July 2022

Ceruchus punctatus

First stage beetle in the yard. I found it under the spruce stump.

9 July 2022

Eudioctria sackeni

First robber fly in the yard! On the Mallow-leaf Ninebark.

6 July 2022

Papilio eurymedon (Pale Swallowtail)

I've seen Pale Swallowtails in the Moscow area before, but this was the first photo from the yard.

4 July 2022

Pemphredon inornata

I collected two males from the branch pile. I cooled, painted the thorax, and released one. The other I kept in the collection and IDed.

I saw the painted one the next morning at the nest entrance, waiting for females to emerge. He was there whenever I checked from 11:15 to 4 pm.

23 June 2022

Bromus tectorum (Cheat Grass)

We've had a patch of cheat grass on the street corner for years - probably for as long as we've lived here (21 years), but I hadn't identified it.

22 June 2022

Bromus diandrus (Ripgut Brome)

Keyed out with Flora of Pacific Northwest.

9 June 2022

Lycogala epidendrum (Wolf's Milk)

This is the first slime mold that I've seen in the yard. So it's also a new kingdom (Protozoa), phylum (Mycetozoa), class (Myxomycetes), order (Lyceales), and family (Tubiferaceae)!

5 June 2022

Magdalis sp. (A True Weevil)

26 May 2022

Empis sp.

Anthriscus caucalis (Bur Parsley)

Epistrophe xanthostoma (Emarginate Smoothtail)

Megalonotus sabulicola (Introduced Dirt-colored Seed Bug)

Araniella displicata (Six-spotted Orbweaver)

24 May 2022

Eumerus sp.

On the ground, north side of driveway.

Aphis sp.

On the growing stems of an ocean spray (Holodiscus discolor).

Possible Cow Pea Aphid (Aphis craccivora) - known to infest ocean spray.

4 May 2022

Glischrochilus quadrisignatus (Four-spotted Sap Beetle)

Found in rotting grass clippings next to compost.

Sitona lineatus (Pea Weevil)

On outside of front door frame.

27 April 2022

Polyxenus lagurus (Bristly Millipede)

I found several of these under a rotting piece of wood. The bristles are easily detached and provide protection from spider and ant predators.

24 April 2022

Anthophora pacifica (Pacific Digger Bee)

At least one female (I've never seen more than one at once) is nearly always on the golden currant this spring.

Orsodacne atra (A ravenous leaf beetle - Orsodacnidae)

Several of these were on plum blossums. A new beetle family for the yard.

17 April 2022

Ozyptila sp. (Leaflitter Crab Spiders)

Found on outside wall of house, near the front door.

Caught it, put it in a petri dish and fed it a flightless fruit fly.

18 August 2022 note: Probably misidentified this one. Most likely a Ground Crab Spider (Xysticus sp.)

8 April 2022

Eoclerus eximius

Another new beetle family for the yard and spruce stump (Cleridae: the Checkered Beetles).

This species is a predator of other beetles on the stump.

29 March 2022

Bitoma crenata

This is also a new beetle family for the yard: Zopheridae (the Iron-clad Beetles).

I found two of these on the south birch stump. This species has recently been introduced from Europe.

24 March 2022

Dahlica sp. (Bagworm larva)

This is probably the larva of the Narrow Lichen Case-Bearer (Dahlica triquetrella), which forms a case of silk, covered with sand and bits of lichen. It is native to Europe, and the population in North America is completely parthenogenetic -- so there are no males and the females just reproduce by laying unfertilized eggs. They overwinter as larvae and pupate in the early spring. The female adults are wingless, eyeless, legless and have no mouthparts. They never leave the case in which they were born. They just lay their eggs and die shortly thereafter.

I tried to collect this with a pooter, but I just got the case and left the larva.

Priocnemis sp. (Spider wasp)

I've seen these before, but have only been able to ID to family. Eric Eaton IDed this one for me on twitter.

Found on ground in front of spruce stump, running around like crazy (searching for spiders, I suppose).

18 March 2022

Reduvius personatus (Masked Bed-bug Hunter)

A new LQA family: Reduviidae (Assassin Bugs)!

This is nymph is only about 4 mm long. The adult is much larger and spooky looking.

Found on ground in front of spruce stump

Tetramorium immigrans (Immigrant Pavement Ant)

Found on ground in front of spruce stump.

14 March 2022

Momphidae: Mompha sp.

Found around light in bedroom.

13 March 2022

Common Bird's Nest Fungus (Crucibulum laeve)

I'm sure I've seen this species before in the yard, but didn't stop to take a closer look. These little fungi look like tiny bird's nests. The "nests" are only about 5 mm in diameter. This is the sixth fungus species I've found in the yard and a new family.

2 March 2022

Fungus Gnat (Mycetophilidae)

This is a new fly family for the yard. They are common around the compost, but I've never paid much attention to them. This one was point mounted and IDed to subfamily Mycetophilinae, Genus Anatella - but I need to check on this ID.

1 March 2022

Moth Fly (Psychodidae)

This is a new fly family for the yard. I found it on the compost bin, collected, and point mounted it. Since I didn't get a live photo, I din't submit it to iNat.

I'm pretty sure it's in the subfamily Psychodinae, but it's hard to ID further because some of the important characters were messed up in mouninting.

25 February 2022

Common Raven

16 December 21


I saw this merlin on top of a spruce tree while shoveling snow.

8 December 21

Ramazzottius sp.

Another new phylum: Tardigrades (Tardigrada) -- and Class Eutardigrada, Order Parachela, Family Ramazzottiidae, Genus Ramzzottius

Scraped from moss off a log in backyard.

13 November 21

Bdelloidean Rotifers (Subclass Bdelloidea)

From rainwater in a flower pot.

First LQA rotifer (and new phylum).

5 November 21

Haematococcus sp.

Cysts in Birdbath. Motile form was also present, but they were harder to photograph since they move rapidly.

Haematococcus are common in birdbaths. They often give the water a pinkish tinge.

This is a new phylum for the yard: Chlorophyta.

28 October 21


I found this in a birdbath / hay infusion sample.

Another new phylum: Nematoda.

23 September 21

California Tortiseshell (Nymphalis californica)

I've seen California Tortiseshells before in the yard, but this is the first iNat observation.

14 August 21

Mourning Cloak (Nymphalis antiopa)

I've seen Mourning Cloaks before in the yard, but this is the first iNat observation.

8 June 21

Doratura stylata

Found on lawn. Identified to species on 14 December 21.

6 June 21

Crysus sp.


This cuckoo wasp seemed larger and a bit slower than others that I've seen on the stump. It turned out to be a new genus: Chrysis.

Previous months

May 2021
April 2021