San Diego County Bug Pictures by Ron Lyons

The insect and spider pictures listed below were taken using a 70-210 macro zoom lens with 1 to 1.75 inches of extension tubes on Kodachrome 200 slide film. Except where otherwise noted, the pictures were taken in the field under natural lighting conditions. (It's not that I disapprove of using a flash, I just haven't figured out how to do it. In addition, I have not always been satisfied with the flash photography results that I have seen. They often look good but not quite real.) The biggest problem I have is focussing my camera. Parallax errors when one is close to the subject make the split screen rather useless so I use the ground glass around it instead (not entirely satisfactory but clear screens for my camera are no longer available).

The slides were copied to print film using a (1-2x) slide copier aimed at a white sheet of paper placed in bright sunlight. (The hardest thing about doing this is centering the slides in the viewfinder. Since the light must pass through the slides, the view is often quite dark.) The exposure times (usually 1/4 to 1/2 sec) can be adjusted slightly by moving closer to or farther away from the paper. I used Kodacolor 100 and 200 for the copies.

The images are all jpegs between generally between 15K and 30K in size.

1998 Dec - added leaf miner picture, link to new stamp images
1997 Mar 18 - odonate pictures from internet article finally added
1996 Aug 01 - added Big Red Skimmer, Giant Whitefly images
1996 Jun 26 - added Progressive Bee Fly, Bola Spider, and cultural odonatology images

Order Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies)

Sympetrum corruptum (Pastel Skimmer) in partial obelisk posture
My pictures from article for Internet Pond Society Odonata Designs in Human Culture

Order Homoptera

Unidentified moth trapped in Spittlebug froth
Giant Whitefly (some text and same picture references)
     spiral pattern containing eggs on cocklebur leaf
     spiral pattern with second and third instar larvae
     fourth instar larvae
     adults and larvae
     Hibiscus leaf showing fourth instar beard (San Diego)

Order Neuroptera

Owlfly and yes it is oriented correctly (twilight shot, image has soft focus)

Order Diptera (Flies)

Progressive Bee Fly
Crane Fly body showing halteres (knobby thoracic extensions)
     The Crane Fly shown here was found dead on the floor.
     For more information see Bug Article Sep 95 - Flies

Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)

Leaf mines on willow (actually 2 mines running outward from the central vein in the leaf, terminated by a hole in the leaf)
Leaf miner at work on willow (taken through a microscope - actual length of miner less than 3mm)
     For more information see Bug Article Jan 99 - Leaf Miners .
     The leaf miner shown produced the kind of mines shown.
Larva of Anise Swallowtail (butterfly) on Sweet Fennel
Fiery Skipper (butterfly)


Bola Spider female hanging from bamboo (film/development flaw - some small blue streaks in picture)
Silver Argiope (all three pictures + some words)
     Silver Argiope (f) with zig-zag bands of stabilimentum
     Silver Argiope (f) with abnormal stabilimentum
     Silver Argiope egg sac suspended between cactus pads
     For more information on Silver Argiopes see Bug Articles:
         May 95 - The Stabilimentum of the Silver Argiope Spider
         Apr 95 - The Silver Argiope Spider
Cyclosa web with vertical stabilimentum - can you find the spider?

For permission to reproduce the pictures of bugs found in San Diego County in written publications or commercial works, please contact me. Otherwise please credit and notify me (I'm interested in how they are used and in what way they are used).

Please direct any comments, questions, criticisms, corrections or suggestions to:

Ron Lyons (volunteer 1990-1999)
Chula Vista Nature Center, 1000 Gunpowder Point Drive, Chula Vista, CA 91910-1201