Today’s photos are quick shots of what I was able to catch. (Not captured: tiger swallowtails, a goldfinch on the zinnias, and a hummingbird!) The cicada husk was of interest as the first one I’ve seen in our yard this year, even though I’ve been hearing them in the neighborhood for a while. I could also see the hole in the soil from which it had emerged at the base of the crape myrtle. To the best of my recollection (but I’ll try to verify this) we planted the crape myrtle perhaps 5-7 years ago, after the death and removal of an old Japanese maple that stood nearby and exhibited annual signs of a thriving cicada population. I wonder how long it takes for a newly planted tree (or large shrub) to acquire an associated multi-year population of cicadas, and what became of the ones living at the base of the maple. Probably having the stump ground up was not good for them.
The fungus lives with some similar smaller ones near the base of an oak tree in our neighborhood.
The bumblebee is part of a project to try to get at least one photo of each type of bee in our yard.
I’ve ordered a macro lens for my iPhone from PhotoJojo and hope that it will improve my results. I recognize that I will only use whatever camera is in my pocket, which is generally going to be my phone. I can only admire from a distance the work of people like Alex Wild (@myrmecos); I particularly love his jumping spider portraits .