Posts Tagged ‘Lilioceris lilii’

An insect on the edge of a leaf is a perfect candidate for a macro shot and when I saw this one from a distance in my neighbor’s garden, I got to work without a clue about its identity.

When I looked at the photos initially, I thought I had captured images of a Red Milkweed Beetle (Tetraopes tetrophthalmus), because of its bright red body and curved, segmented antennae. (I have a self-identified obsession with this insect that I discussed in a blog posting last year.) However, there were a few problems with that identification. This beetle seemed smaller; it was on a plant that was definitely not a milkweed plant; and it seemed too early to be seeing a milkweed beetle. My identification was further complicated by the fact that I never did see the back of the beetle.

So what insect did I photograph? I have been going over photos at bugguide.net, one of my favorite sources and wonder if this might be a Lily Leaf Beetle (Lilioceris lilii). Tentatively, though I like the name that I invented for this post, Red Spring Beetle.

I may not be sure about the identification of this insect, but I know that I like the photos that I managed to get, especially the first one. I captured a pretty good amount of detail and I like the way that he posed, looking directly at me.


Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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