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Photo#294012
Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - female

Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - Female
Mouth of Cottonwood Canyon, at southeast base of the White Mountains, Inyo County, California, USA
June 16, 2009
Female Allograpta obliqua approaching an inflorescence of a desert shrub, Psorothamnus polydenius, in the Pea family (Fabaceae).

Images of this individual: tag all
Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - female Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - female Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - female Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - female Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - female Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - female Allograpta series from north of Death Valley - Allograpta obliqua - female

Moved
Moved from Allograpta exotica.

Ron agrees that this is obliqua (personal communication).

Moved

 
Reconsider Move?
Ken, I know these two species are easy to confuse, but I think this is actually A. obliqua. Please see the comments and reference figures I just posted in the last two images of this series.

(Hopefully, Martin or another expert can correct or confirm my observations below those posts.)

 
I moved them in response to Ron's comments...
...not because of any expertise of my own. :)

Please feel free to move them back to obliqua if you feel they belong there--or to genus if you want to hold out for expert input. I think I'll recuse myself from this one.

Revised ID: Allograpta exotica
Aaron, please see...

 
Thanks for your comments, Ron
...you got me to study and learn a lot more about these two! I agree, A. obliqua and A. exotica can be easy to confuse (or, equivalently, difficult to separate). And for a long time it seems we were (sometimes erroneously) placing anything that looked like them under A. obliqua.

But in this case, upon careful consideration, I think this actually is A. obliqua. See the detailed comments and reference figures I just posted in the last two images of this series (here and here).

 
Very nice, Aaron.
Yes, there was a lot of misdirected lumping going on before we had our first identified A. exotica. Hopefully, that will be corrected now.

Thank you for your wonderfully detailed work, which I'll soon study. FWIW, I did waffle on species of yours and nearly left it alone. In retrospect, I should have, but I'm glad I didn't because of the wealth of information you've provided.

Interesting info on feeding, Aaron
Recently, I've noticed these syrphids - numerous now - spend a lot of time on a flower. You've helped me understand why.

 
They're beauties!
And beneficial as pollinators (also, as larvae, for devouring aphids as you know).

PS: For anyone rusty or unfamiliar with pea-flower parts and terminology, I added a link to a simple explanatory diagram after the comments for the 2nd image in this series.

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