Saturday, November 17, 2018

Wyoming Wrap-Up

Back in August, still in Wyoming, we headed south from our spot down by the river. 

Arrival at the main east west drag marked the official end to our westerly travels for this year.

There were still several hundred miles in Wyoming though so we were happy to take in more of this beautiful state.

We took a short detour through the Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge.

It was a quiet non-lifer day at the refuge though.  Our sightings like this family of Trumpeter Swans were all in the familiar category.

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How do you know when the wind stops blowing in Wyoming?  All of the people fall down.

Our eastern most point in Wyoming this time around was to visit with friends, Lou and Dale, at their 'new' (to us anyway) place between Cheyenne and Laramie.  It had been a few years since we'd seen each other and we'd never seen their acreage.  They have a beautiful piece of property with just a little bit of grass for the puppies and acres upon acres of mixed grass prairie.

So, of course, the visit included many nature walks in the waist tall grass.

And the spotting of lots of pretty and interesting things.

Field Crescent - Phycides campestris - A Lifer!

Orb Weaver perhaps Larinia borealis

There was lots of pollinating going on.

Loads of hopping going on, as well.

Pretty sure we found another Lifer called the Western Branded Skipper - Hesperia colorado

A Very Cool Walkingstick - somewhat hard to spot.  Look for the brown 'stick' sitting horizontally.

He was slow enough to permit a close-up but the plant was thorny enough to prevent too many!

This little one was on its way out but still we caught a few minutes with yet another Lifer - the Ridings' Satyr Butterfly - Neominois ridingsii.

Dale is a retired Firefighter who now volunteers for the local unit.  While we were visiting he had hoped Nicole could help him replace a leaking section of hose on their truck.

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Of course she will!

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So, they went to work replacing the top part (in Dale's hand) with the new one (shown installed in pump).

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Here's the water pump that had the leaky section.  The best part of the whole process was ...

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when we were done, Nicole got to test the system!

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All ready to join the volunteer firefighter club!

After we fixed the fire engine we headed to town to take a walk around the park.  We were excited to see some familiar things as well as some new ones

like this immature Black Crowned Night Heron - we had only recently (back in S.D.) seen our first adult phase of this bird.

Lou spotted this beauty and called us over.   It is a Lifer in the caterpillar category. 

How wonderful!  Excited to see  papilio multicaudata - the Two-tailed Swallowtail Butterfly in Caterpillar Phase.

We spotted this cute little bird on a Laramie County Rocks rock hidden in the nook of a tree.

In the grass we spotted this pretty moth that we have not yet identified.

If this is the Atlantis Fritillary Butterfly that we think it is then we scored yet another Lifer during this visit!

Spotting a Common Checkered Skipper Butterfly was not new but he was just so dainty and pretty sitting atop the purple flowers.

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Lou - hanging with Mother Goose.

Back at the house...

We didn't even have to go outside to spot this Underwing Moth as it had been drawn inside by the lights.

Bee Flies have got to be on of the neatest looking insects for sure. 

A Funnel-weaver Grass Spider, Agelenidae, maybe Agelenopsis, had made a neat little home in the fields.

This Convergent Lady Beetle, Hippodamia convergens, was happily hanging around.

Pretty sure this is a Melissa Blue Butterfly

but Blues can be difficult to ID.

This blue though... we are still working to identify.

And, that...

was our visit...

with Lou and Dale at their beautiful home in Wyoming.

Stay tuned... we've started putting Annie back together and look forward to getting the blog caught up before we move on down the road.