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Author Topic:   Back Home from my 2021 Cross-country Road Trip
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 2571
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 5.5


(5)
Message 1 of 12 (888309)
09-11-2021 7:57 PM


My friend and I left on August 27 and used Interstate 90 as our main route, until we got to the Black Hills National Forest in NE Wyoming. We stopped and collected at a small lake we have visited whenever we are in the vicinity and this time we were later in the season than prior visits so maybe some different species are flying (there were, but nothing uncommon). On a small nearby stream we did find some specimens that have some morphological features that are different from western and eastern specimens. It may be a new subspecies or even a new species, that's new to science.

We then headed south to stop near Valentine, Nebraska on the Niobrara River. We camped all the way on this trip. my friend has a nifty fold out tent that fits right on top of his Toyota pickup. I can rearrange my gear so I can sleep in the back of my Toyota minivan.

We drove straight east from there to Chicago to pick up the 3rd member of our group and I delivered 96 new 16x24 inch prints for a proposed exhibition at a natural history museum (we narrowed that down to a portfolio of the 48 best).

She then followed us up to Northern Wisconsin to meet the 4th member of our group at a fantastic biological research station on a lake. In the early 20th century it was a high-end fishing lodge all constructed of logs, but now researchers in all sorts of fields can stay there for $22 a day! The 4 of us had the whole place to ourselves and we stayed for 4 nights. The weather was not very cooperative but we managed to get lots of nymphs and collected eggs from four species.

We have lots of observation material as well as subjects for a variety of experiments that will keep us busy through the fall and winter.

In all the states we traveled through except Illinois, the people we encountered in our brief trips into stores, acted like there is no such thing as Covid-19. Only about 10% of customers wore masks and none of the store employees did. I suspect none of them were vaccinated. We wore our masks, N95s, every single time we were near anyone and we were vaccinated.

Dragonfly numbers everywhere we sampled were about 25% of what we would normally expect. Weather this year is the suspected culprit, too hot and dry in some places and too wet and cold in others.

It was a much needed cathartic trip after 2 seasons of self imposed lock down. On the way back west we again sampled in the Black Hills and picked up some more specimens for analysis.


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


Replies to this message:
 Message 5 by AZPaul3, posted 09-11-2021 10:03 PM Tanypteryx has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 33409
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.2


(1)
Message 2 of 12 (888310)
09-11-2021 8:21 PM


One big difference. When my biologists went sampling they came back with the main ingredient for a Low Country Boil.

My Website: My Website

Replies to this message:
 Message 3 by Tanypteryx, posted 09-11-2021 9:06 PM jar has responded

  
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 2571
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 5.5


(1)
Message 3 of 12 (888312)
09-11-2021 9:06 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by jar
09-11-2021 8:21 PM


Would a low country boil include crayfish? My friend in Chicago says dozens of her favorite dragonfly habitats around Illinois have been destroyed by invasive Rusty Crayfish. It is native to parts of the SE, but it is hammering aquatic habitats outside its native range.

Maybe she can get high-end Chicago restaurants to add it to the menu.


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


This message is a reply to:
 Message 2 by jar, posted 09-11-2021 8:21 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 7 by jar, posted 09-12-2021 6:36 AM Tanypteryx has not yet responded

  
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 2571
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 5.5


(1)
Message 4 of 12 (888313)
09-11-2021 9:10 PM


I am shooting stacks of some of the Black Hills dragonflies we collected the day be fore yesterday.

I drove 800 miles yesterday, from Missoula, Montana, to get my specimens home alive.


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 5984
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.6


(1)
Message 5 of 12 (888315)
09-11-2021 10:03 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Tanypteryx
09-11-2021 7:57 PM


Jealous for all the fun. It came through in your post. Well done.

This part bothered me, of course.

Dragonfly numbers everywhere we sampled were about 25% of what we would normally expect. Weather this year is the suspected culprit, too hot and dry in some places and too wet and cold in others.

Is this another strong data point in the evidence of an arthropod collapse on this continent?


Eschew obfuscation. Habituate elucidation.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Tanypteryx, posted 09-11-2021 7:57 PM Tanypteryx has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 6 by Tanypteryx, posted 09-12-2021 1:03 AM AZPaul3 has not yet responded

  
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 2571
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 5.5


(3)
Message 6 of 12 (888319)
09-12-2021 1:03 AM
Reply to: Message 5 by AZPaul3
09-11-2021 10:03 PM


This part bothered me, of course.

Dragonfly numbers everywhere we sampled were about 25% of what we would normally expect. Weather this year is the suspected culprit, too hot and dry in some places and too wet and cold in others.

Is this another strong data point in the evidence of an arthropod collapse on this continent?

Man, I hope not and we are trying to be optimistic. Maybe this is a screwy year. My local declines are all from human causes.

We have been making more and deadlier pesticides for more than 100 years, for all the things in nature that compete with us, but they are just as deadly for all the organisms that have no impact on us but that perform all sorts of important functions in their habitats. Millions of tons of this shit! Ecosystems and agriculture are about to collapse because of the insect apocalypses. The poison is out there and there's no way to undo this.

And Phat thinks gold is more valuable than food. When the food is gone 8 billion people are going to start eating each other.[end of rant]


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


This message is a reply to:
 Message 5 by AZPaul3, posted 09-11-2021 10:03 PM AZPaul3 has not yet responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 33409
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 7 of 12 (888321)
09-12-2021 6:36 AM
Reply to: Message 3 by Tanypteryx
09-11-2021 9:06 PM


Mud Puppies are only in a Louisianan Low Country Boil. And a tray full of boiled Mud Puppies ain't a half bad diner.

My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 3 by Tanypteryx, posted 09-11-2021 9:06 PM Tanypteryx has not yet responded

  
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 2571
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 5.5


(3)
Message 8 of 12 (888337)
09-13-2021 10:46 PM


Nymphs and eggs
Today I started getting ready to extract eggs from a coffee filter and was pleasantly surprised to discover that the female had inserted many eggs all the way through my filter paper substrate and the were floating free and would not need to be gently teased out of the filter with dental probes. Perfect, they will be free from stuck on fibers and other un-photogenic debris.

Also, all of the nymphs arrived alive and sound so each into its own small habitat and they will be periodically photographed and measured. These 6 species are all stream inhabitants and we are studying how they detect and capture prey guided primarily by vibrations detected by specialized setae on their antennae. They can triangulate when their prey is exactly within striking distance of their prehensile labium or lower lip.

I have already generated 520 gigabytes of image files since I got home Friday night.


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


Replies to this message:
 Message 10 by ringo, posted 09-14-2021 12:05 PM Tanypteryx has not yet responded

  
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 2571
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 5.5


(1)
Message 9 of 12 (888339)
09-14-2021 11:56 AM


Cannabis is blooming
While I was gone my wife took care of my 4 cannabis plants. All she had to do was mix fertilizer into the water and water them each day. They had just started blooming when I left and now they are loaded with flowers that are very photogenic. Like I needed more photo subjects!

Harvest is still a month away...


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


  
ringo
Member
Posts: 19226
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 3.7


Message 10 of 12 (888340)
09-14-2021 12:05 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by Tanypteryx
09-13-2021 10:46 PM


Re: Nymphs and eggs
Tanypteryx writes:

... gently teased out of the filter with dental probes.


I looked up how big dragonfly eggs are....

Tanypteryx writes:

...they detect and capture prey guided primarily by vibrations detected by specialized setae on their antennae. They can triangulate when their prey is exactly within striking distance of their prehensile labium or lower lip.


And I looked up setae.

I can see why you've developed such a fascination with dragonflies.


"I call that bold talk for a one-eyed fat man!"
-- Lucky Ned Pepper

This message is a reply to:
 Message 8 by Tanypteryx, posted 09-13-2021 10:46 PM Tanypteryx has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 11 by dwise1, posted 09-14-2021 7:26 PM ringo has acknowledged this reply

  
dwise1
Member
Posts: 4702
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 5.1


(2)
Message 11 of 12 (888341)
09-14-2021 7:26 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by ringo
09-14-2021 12:05 PM


Re: Nymphs and eggs
I can see why you've developed such a fascination with dragonflies.

And here I always thought that he had been frightened as a child by an episode of Lexx (their spaceship or shuttlecraft looked like dragonflies).


This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by ringo, posted 09-14-2021 12:05 PM ringo has acknowledged this reply

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Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 2571
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 5.5


(3)
Message 12 of 12 (888342)
09-14-2021 8:25 PM
Reply to: Message 11 by dwise1
09-14-2021 7:26 PM


Re: Nymphs and eggs

dwise1 writes:

ringo writes:

I can see why you've developed such a fascination with dragonflies.


And here I always thought that he had been frightened as a child by an episode of Lexx (their spaceship or shuttlecraft looked like dragonflies).

Boy, I'd have had to be a time travlin' kid for that to happen. Lexx was pretty good though.

It was predators primarily that caught my attention. At around the same time Life Magazine published a dinosaur spread with foldouts of paintings. These were prints of large murals at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History. I was captivated by these images and anything that has dragon right in its name must be pretty cool too.

Dragonfly nymphs are the ultimate predator and when I first read about them I was all in

My dad told me something at about this point in my life (8 years old). He said you can study subjects that lots of other people have already studied and therefore a lot is already known, or you can pursue subjects that only a few have studied and make discoveries. That was the year he got me a microscope.

My parents tolerated containers of all shapes and sizes of samples from every aquatic habitat I visited until I left home.


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


This message is a reply to:
 Message 11 by dwise1, posted 09-14-2021 7:26 PM dwise1 has not yet responded

  
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