I discovered The Backyard Arthropod Project blog this spring while trying to ID a ginormous bee-like creature I found resting on a fence near the compost heap.
The photos on the blog led me to believe my initial suspicion was correct: the bug was most probably a queen yellow jacket. No surprise there; last summer I lost the use of the compost heap for the better part of the growing season because I let the heap get too dry, making it an ideal location for a colony of yellow jackets to raise their young’uns.
I was impressed by the blogger’s approach and added a link to the site on my blogroll (the “Resources for Writers” tab at the top of this page). Tim Eisele, the blogger, is an extractive metallurgist by profession but an entomologist at heart. A couple of years ago he started a project to document anything with an exoskeleton that wanders onto on his land on Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula.
(The Keweenaw is a peninsula of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, jutting out into Lake Superior some 300 miles north of Milwaukee. Besides being famous for its mineral deposits, especially copper, the peninsula also is home to terrific food. In summer, roadside markets sell thimbleberry jam and hot-from-the-oven Cornish-style meat pasties. Mmmmmmmmmm…)
This week BAP’s creature feature is a mosquito undergoing cosmic justice (click here), which couldn’t have come at a more appropriate time; with all the rain we’ve been having, I’m expecting swarms to arrive any day now.
The blog is also worth noting for its mini-course in microphotography on the cheap.
© 2010 Anne Bingham and Making It Up as I Go