September 04, 2022

Hey Gallfriends! Today starts Project Gall Week 2022! Sep 3-11!

Starts today! Be sure to join the project and add your gall observations
I'm going to challenge myself to get as many different gall species in the Bay Area as I can! (While working 4 days this week (ha ha!). And get some new gall species! Today I started in Contra Costa County at Mt Diablo SP to pick up Urchin Gall and Coral Gall (both uncommon on blue oak):
Urchin gall (attaches to the leaf)
Coral gall (attaches to the stem)
Tomorrow it's the Livermore Valley area of Alameda County to get various additional oak and willow galls and some on sage.
What are your gall adventures looking like?

Posted on September 04, 2022 03:46 by chyroptera chyroptera | 0 comments | Leave a comment

August 06, 2022

It's that time of year! Gall Week 2022! Sept 3-11!

Gall aficionados! It's that time again! Fall galls are upon us! To celebrate this lovely diversity, September 3-11 join me and a swarm of other people in photographing galls anywhere in North America and the world and adding them to the project Gall Week 2022! Let's see how many species we can find!

Posted on August 06, 2022 22:02 by chyroptera chyroptera | 0 comments | Leave a comment

July 25, 2022

Grindelia Gall Quest: keep your eyes peeled for more of these!

This all started with @naturesarchive posting this observation from Stanislaus County CA this month!:
I am in the east bay and I regularly see tons of Grindelia sp. but had not noticed any leafy galls on them before. I assume since the plants are so common they get passed over often by iNatters in favor of rarer wildflowers and flowers with more pollinators. Interestingly enough I was at a project site in Alameda County this week surrounded by Grindelia sp. and once I actually looked I saw leafy galls for the first time! So excited and wanted to post, but they were on private property, so I figured I would try to find them at a public location such as EBRPD Brushy Peak Regional Preserve which is somewhat nearby in the same habitat.
In iNat, I looked up which trails people had seen Grindelia, and set off this morning to find more leafy galls. I looked at 20+ Grindelia plants before finding my first one!
Looked at 20 more Grindelia plants and found a second!
The third plant with a gall I decided I would split it open to see if it was indeed an insect creating the gall as suspected, and if the gall actually had a chamber--I was in luck:
Chamber and larva confirmed!
One more gall from the day:
I bet there are many more leafy galls on Grindelia throughout the Bay Area and Central Valley! Keep your eyes peeled! (See a dried up version from Jan 2020):

Posted on July 25, 2022 05:15 by chyroptera chyroptera | 5 comments | Leave a comment

July 16, 2022

National Moth Week! 11th Annual July 23-31, 2022

National Moth Week is almost here! Anyone up for a night of moth-lighting?
List of events at:

National Moth Week, 11th annual, July 23-31, 2022

"National Moth Week celebrates the beauty, life cycles, and habitats of moths. “Moth-ers” of all ages and abilities are encouraged to learn about, observe, and document moths in their backyards, parks, and neighborhoods. National Moth Week is being held, worldwide, during the last full week of July. NMW offers everyone, everywhere a unique opportunity to become a Citizen Scientist and contribute scientific data about moths. Through partnerships with major online biological data depositories, NMW participants can help map moth distribution and provide needed information on other life history aspects around the globe."

Posted on July 16, 2022 15:33 by chyroptera chyroptera | 6 comments | Leave a comment

November 16, 2020

Bioblitz Club 2nd Virtual Urban Bioblitz Saturday Nov 28th!

The Bioblitz Club is having a second Virtual Urban Bioblitz on Saturday November 28th!

What is a virtual bioblitz?

It's when you take photos of nature wherever you are and post them to iNaturalist! It can be any time of day on the 28th, at your house: in your yard, on the eves of your house, on your bird feeders, or take a walk on your street, in your local park, etc! You can listen for owls late at night, or look for pollinators on dandelions at 2pm in the afternoon!

Description from the Bioblitz Club event webpage:

"Join us for another Virtual BioBlitz! The great advantage of a virtual BioBlitz is that you can join in from wherever you're at. All you need to do, is join our iNaturalist project (will be posted here soon), and go out on 11/28. Or stay home. Explore your favorite preserve or your garage, wherever you'd like. Any observations you make on 11/28 will be automatically added to our project. You can also join our new Facebook group Virtual Urban BioBlitz, to meet other virtual BioBlitzers and share your photos and thoughts."

And a great thing about a virtual bioblitz is many people who are experts in various fields look at and identify your posts that day! This is especially great for fungi, plants, & insects, which don't usually get ID'd as fast as the vertebrates (the charismatic megafauna on iNat).

Link to the event:

Link to the Virtual Urban Bioblitz Facebook Group:

(Observations below were recently photographed at Sycamore Grove Park, a local park)

Posted on November 16, 2020 15:33 by chyroptera chyroptera | 4 observations | 0 comments | Leave a comment


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