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Photo#586984
Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female

Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - Male Female
Big Basin Redwoods State Park, Pine Mountain, Santa Cruz County, California, USA
June 25, 2011

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Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female Walkingsticks (Phasmida)? - Timema californicum - male - female

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Very niice series, Scott!
As far as I know (i.e. from studying the literature listed here, as well as info and images online), there are three species that occur in the Santa Cruz area: T. californicum, T. poppensis, and T. douglasi.

T. poppensis and T. douglasi are "look-alike" species, with T. poppensis being a sexually reproducing species, and T. douglasi being a partheonogenetic (i.e. all female, asexually reproducing) species. The recorded host plants for both these species are Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga mensiezii) and redwood (Sequoia sempervirens).

T. californicum is the type species for the genus, first described from the Santa Cruz Mnts in 1895. It's host plants include manzanita, ceanothus, oak, and toyon.

The fact that these were hitch-hikers on your friends clothing makes the host plant unclear in Big Basin...where all the above host plants often coexists in relative proximity. I had the same problem in the post below:



But the key to the ID here lies in the terminalia (and also in the lack of clear dorsal longitudinal stripes...though that can be variable, so the terminalia are preferred criteria). Thanks to the excellent shots you got of the terminalia, I'm quite confident this is T. californicum. Compare the male terminalia in your shots with the diagram of T. californicum in Fig. 6 of this plate...and then with the post of T. poppensis in the thumb below (full-size image here).



A CalPhotos image of a (female, of course) T. douglasi can be seen here.

For reference citations, and lots more info on these fascinating creatures, see the Timema info page.

[And say hi to Nancy, Nick and the kids...they may enjoy finding some of these adorable creatures (maybe all three species!) in the general area of Bonny Doon). ]

 
fauna
Aaron,

Thanks for the detailed information. When we spotted these we were above Buzzards Roost, so only 3 Douglas Fir in the last 30-45 minutes of travel, lots of Ceanothus Manzanita Oak and Knobcone Pine.

I have two more Timema, also found on Pine Mountain Trail, also above the Douglas fir Tree line, also on Oak actually on Chaparral Clematis that was climbing the small oak. Anyone in the area who is looking for these, I'd suggest Pine Mountain Trail and as soon as you leave the Douglas Fir and redwood behind, start looking, at least in the months I have photos of them.

Scott

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