Silky Hairstreak caterpillars with attendant ants.
On a broad leafed wattle these small, black caterpillars were apparently be lovingly looked after by groups of grey and black ants. The caterpillars were about 15mm long. I could not see what the ants were getting from the caterpillar but they seemed to be regularly checking the rear end.
In a local nature reserve adjoining a large national park both dominated by various eucalyptus species.
"Occurring mainly in the Dandenong Ranges where it breeds on wattles (Acacia sp.). An early spring species whose larvae feed on Blackwood (A. melanoxylon) and Silver Wattle (A. dealbata). The larvae are attended by the strong smelling ant, Anonychomyrma biconvexa. Pupation usually occurs under the bark of nearby eucalypts. " - Museum Victoria
Conservation status HIGHLY VULNERABLE
Not really dead at all - these clean looking moths make it simple to get underneath shots by remaining completely still for up to a minute if upturned. About 40mm long, mostly white with many dark spots and a striking flash of vermilion around the thorax. Attracted to powerful night lights above a car at a national park.
One of the few species I have found whose larvae can feed on Tradescantia which has become a noxious weed around here. Go mothy !!
This tiny spider resembled a speck of bird poo but being on the under side of the leaf so she got found out.
About 5mm wide. On broad leafed acacia in a local nature reserve. 'Two-spined orb weaver' (imm♀)
This super-cute cup moth with a lion's mane and netted wings was loitering under night lights at the local school. A species I didn't recognise about 15mm long.
Under strong MV lights and tall eucalyptus.
Also known as 'Pale Cup Moth'
About 50mm across with wings closed. The orange around the head and thorax is not common.
Resting on a building wall under light fittings in a local nature reserve.
Cpommonly called 'Urticating Anthelid' because the hairs from the caterpillar 'urt.
This moth is incredibly variable coming in a range of fashionable colours including grey, cream, green, yellow, tan, brown and the various markings may each be present or not.
A small notodontid moth with big fur. About 30mm long.
Attracted to lights at night at the local primary school.
"There is a range of wing colours of adult Trichiocercus sparshalli. Most are white, but specimens can be obtained from a light grey to a dark grey. Peter Marriott has reported seeing specimens from many places in Victoria from October to May, but there seems to be no time relationship between colour variations. Those from Mt. Martha on the Mornington Peninsula appear to be always white, but those from Ballarat and Kallista have the full range of colours. They all have a balding brown head having black hair. They have a wingspan of about 4 cms." - LepidopteraButterflyHouse
A very small bell shaped moth (about 12mm long) with a very small head.
Resting on a wall in a public barbecue area in a local nature reserve.
A small moth of about 20mm wingspan. Attractive tan and green wavy patterns.
Resting under night lighting at the local school at night.
A 'Green and Brown Carpet' was seen here about the same time previous year.
These sub-conical galls with apical holes are female galls of a gall inducing scale insect. The female galls showed enlarged leaf glands. Some leaves also showed small cylindrical galls with apical openings- these were the males of the same species of scale insect (pic 3). Pic 2 shows galls of both sexes on the one leaf.
The underside of the leaf showed slight discolouration and minimal waxy bloom (pic 4).
Spotted on juvenile leaves of a eucalyptus tree (species unknown) in a nature reserve.
This little moth larva builds it's case in stepped expanding segments from perfectly chosen and measured sticks on the host plant. In this case the host plant is a native Cupressus sp.
In a small nature reserve in suburbia.
Some call this a 'Tower casemoth'
Peltoschema orphana is the most common leaf beetle found on Acacia, usually silver wattle. Commonly called the fireblight beetle it can cause devastation to silver wattle populations and even kill trees by defoliation. This versatile little beast is polyphagus and was feeding, with several others, and their larvae, on Eucalyptus which is uncommon but has been recorded before.
A rich coloured moth about 34mm long. Usually rests with wings tented but takes a while to get there after landing. Deep orange head/face and grey hind wings indicate species. Resting on a wall in a local nature reserve. Can be confused with Fisera perplexata
Pic 1 shows the underside of the cap of this thick white fungus. The fertile surface showed closely packed white "teeth" instead of gills or pores. The teeth were decurrent ( running down the stem) -pic 4. The young fruiting bodies were growing in a clump with some of their thick white stipes fused together. The caps were a pale orange, distorted by mutual pressure and showed in-rolled margins. The stem turned a beautiful orange when bruised or cut.
Growing on a damp eucalyptus forest floor, among leaf and wood debris.
About 15mm wide. Solitary cap next to a very damp log. Glutinous. Attractive colouring black at the centre graduating to a pale caramel at the margin.
In a very damp dark part of a local nature reserve.
Brackets of up to 30mm wide. Very distinctive yellow gills with much crossing, meandering and very much darker towards the centre. Thin and leathery caps with a very dull ochre top. Caps seem to curl into wavy shapes as they get older.
These numbered about a dozen in a line on the side of a huge Pinus radiata log with Wicks nature reserve. These logs were placed in the area for landscaping purposes.
ID as in Fuhrer (2005) #281
Rarely found yet in Australia? and seemingly uncommon elsewhere. The best reference images I can find are with Renée Lebeuf from Quebec.
(need to add ' Pseudomerulius curtisii ')
From above they look like little brains attached to a thin stick. From below they reveal a crazy maze of crossed and meandering gills. The largest of the group was about 40mm wide and there were about a dozen caps in total.
Very tall damp eucalyptus rain forest in Dandenong Ranges NP.
(need to add ' Campanella junghahnii ')
This strange little wasp was drowning in a tank of rainwater. After scooping it out it gradually came back into action on a paper towel and turned out to be an unusual type.
About 15mm long overall. An unusual sectioned, tapered abdomen which seemed very flexible.
Suburban back yard. Very cold damp conditions.
A unusual wasp family with only one genus with only 3 species in Australia. Monomachus antipodalis is the only species found in Victoria.
This moth is has evolved to resemble a dead gum leaf in behaviour as well as appearance. About 50mm wingspan.
In a local nature reserve adjoining a national park.
This specimen has very pale markings compared to some but the underwing shots are indicative.
The larvae feed on Bracken - Pteridium esculentum