Chula Vista Nature Center Arthropod Notes

  • Tree crickets are often found in Telegraph Weed, sitting on the leaves with their heads pointed in towards the stalk. I have found them most frequently along the railway tracks.
  • The Harlequin Cabbage Bug is widespread. Its primary food plant is Bladderpod but it seems to be equally at home on the Mustard. Both the young insects (nymphs) and the adults are conspicuous.
  • I have only found the lace bug on the Telegraph Weed along the tracks. The colony is not big so the habitat may not be the preferred one.
  • The green leafhopper appears to be specific to Tamarisk.
  • The bagworm indicated is only found attached to the leaves of Telegraph Weed.
  • The Pygmy Blue butterfly is the smallest butterfly in California and also the most abundant one in the area. It can often be found flying close to the ground or perched on the vegetation. The Common Hairstreak is less abundant and larger.
  • The tiger beetle is an active insect found mainly on the beach along the shoreline.
  • The sand wasps make colonies on open patches of sandy soil.
  • The Green Lynx Spider is perhaps the area's most conspicuous spider; the Cyclosa spiders are very common especially in the Broom; the Burrowing Wolf Spiders nest along the railway tracks while Silver Argiopes prefer the cactus.
  • Species seen only once:
    	praying mantis                          Western Leaf-footed Bug 
    	Bordered Plant Bug                      Thread-waisted Conopid 
    	Monarch                                 Western Tiger Swallowtail
  • Seasonal:
           - some species are more prominent in spring on the daisies and sunflowers
              e.g. Green Stink Bugs, Tarnished Plant Bugs,  thrips and inchworms
           - Anise Swallowtail (larvae feed on Fennel)
           - Painted Lady and Red Admiral are found in spring and fall
           - the Armored Stink Beetles and Velvet Ants prefer cooler parts of day in summer
           - the Green Fruit Beetle arrives in July and can be found through early September
           - many insects are more active when it is sunny, not too hot, not too cool
           - spiders become more evident as the season progresses