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Cooperative Extension San Joaquin County

Posts Tagged: Art Shapiro

Monarch Caterpillars--in November?

A November monarch caterpillar found on tropical milkweed in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

What a Thanksgiving surprise! No, the stuffed turkey didn't slip out of the oven and fall on the floor. Nor did the pumpkin pie turn another shade of orange. Some unexpected guests arrived--four to be exact. That's the number of monarch caterpillars...

Posted on Friday, November 25, 2016 at 5:28 PM

They Didn't Get the Memo

Gulf Fritillaries are still flying--and mating and laying eggs--in November. This one is nectaring on Mexican sunflower (Tithonia). (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

They didn't get the memo. Summer is over. Fall is underway. Winter is coming (Dec. 21). But the Gulf Fritillaries (Agraulis vanillae) are still laying eggs on the passionflower vine here in Vacaville, Calif. The eggs are hatching. The caterpillars are...

Posted on Tuesday, November 8, 2016 at 4:41 PM

These Girls Could Make or Break Your Halloween!

This is a female false black widow, Steatoda grossa, photographed in Davis, Calif. and released. (Photo by Adrienne Austin-Shapiro)

This just in for Halloween! Ever seen a false black widow spider? Commonly known as the cupboard spider,  it's a semi-cosmopolitan spider that's often confused with the "real" black widow spider, known for its powerful venom. Adrienne Shapiro of...

Posted on Friday, October 7, 2016 at 4:11 PM

Common Checkered Skipper: Sometimes It's Not So Common!

A common checkered skipper, Pyrgus communis, visits a Mexican sunflower (Tithonia). (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

The Mexican sunflower (Tithonia) is never alone. It loves company, attracting scores of insect guests, from honey bees to bumble bees to butterflies. We've seen monarchs, Gulf Fritillaries, Western tiger swallowtails, buckeyes, and fiery skippers...

Posted on Tuesday, October 4, 2016 at 3:18 PM

The Predator and the Pest

Breakfast! A hungry praying mantis eyes a cabbage white butterfly. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

So here's this praying mantis perched on top of a prickly pear cactus. It's early morning and she's hungry. A cabbage white butterfly, looking like a white-gowned princess in a medieval palace, flutters by and pauses on the prickly pear to seek some...

Posted on Monday, October 3, 2016 at 5:42 PM

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