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Photo#1547128
Vermileo image w/ palps indicated by arrows - Vermileo comstocki - male

Vermileo image w/ palps indicated by arrows - Vermileo comstocki - Male
Off Cody Lake Road, El Dorado County, California, USA
June 24, 2018
While exploring a large open area within surrounding montane-coniferous habitat (about 20 air kilometers SSW of Lake Tahoe, at ~7300' elevation), I encountered a large group of larval pits which I presumed to be (at least mostly) Vermileo in sandy/dusty substrate on a north-facing hillside. Joyce Gross made a video which pans through the surroundings...ending with a view of the larval pits.

A bit after finding the pits, I pointed them out to my field companions Joyce & Diane, and I then headed off to key out some nearby plants. When I returned, Joyce informed me they had found an adult male there, perched on a grass stem! I was excited, as I had not yet seen an adult Vermileo in the wild.

The Vermileo was quite small and hard to spot, and Joyce remarked she may well have missed it had it not drawn attention by flying a short distance prior to settling on the stem. Its wings had been spread open earlier, but by the time I arrived it had folded them closed over its abdomen...making for a less "informative" image.

But fortunately I was able to get a view of the palps...which are positioned above the pale & somewhat pubescent proboscis. The palps are indicated by two small yellow arrows in the photo above (see full-size image). They are small and narrow here...but clearly quite dark, which is considered diagnostic of species V. comstocki.

Joyce likely obtained better images (of both the palps...and the wings, abdomen, thorax, head, etc.). Hopefully she'll get an opportunity to post them at some point.

Images of this individual: tag all
Vermileo image w/ palps indicated by arrows - Vermileo comstocki - male Vermileo image w/ palps indicated by arrows - Vermileo comstocki - male