Cooperative Extension San Joaquin County
University of California
Cooperative Extension San Joaquin County

Posts Tagged: Asclepias curassavica

The Sneaky Cuckoo Bee

A cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, sips nectar from a tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica, in Vacaville, Calif.  (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

You could call it a slacker, a deadbeat, a moocher, a sponger, or a loafer. Or you could call it a cuckoo bee. Take the cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, a parasite of the digger bee, Anthophora. When the female Anthophora leaves its nest to...

A cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, sips nectar from a tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica, in Vacaville, Calif.  (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, sips nectar from a tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica, in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, sips nectar from a tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica, in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Close-up of a cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, on a tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Close-up of a cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, on a tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Close-up of a cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, on a tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A digger bee, Anthophora urbana, sips nectar from lavender. The cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, is a parasite of Anthophora. It lays eggs in the host's nest, resulting in death of the host's offspring. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A digger bee, Anthophora urbana, sips nectar from lavender. The cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, is a parasite of Anthophora. It lays eggs in the host's nest, resulting in death of the host's offspring. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A digger bee, Anthophora urbana, sips nectar from lavender. The cuckoo bee, Xeromelecta californica, is a parasite of Anthophora. It lays eggs in the host's nest, resulting in death of the host's offspring. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Thursday, September 14, 2017 at 2:07 PM

A Fly, Oh, My!

A female Eristalis stipator (as identified by Martin Hauser of the California Department of Food and Agriculture, foraging on tropical milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A fly, oh, my! On the approval scale, they don't rank nearly as high as honey bees, but some are often mistaken for them. Take the Eristalis stipator, which belongs to the family Syrphidae, the hover flies. It's about the same size as a honey bee and...

A female Eristalis stipator (as identified by Martin Hauser of the California Department of Food and Agriculture, foraging on tropical milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A female Eristalis stipator (as identified by Martin Hauser of the California Department of Food and Agriculture, foraging on tropical milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A female Eristalis stipator (as identified by Martin Hauser of the California Department of Food and Agriculture, foraging on tropical milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

The female Eristalis stipator peers at the photographer. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
The female Eristalis stipator peers at the photographer. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

The female Eristalis stipator peers at the photographer. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Eristalis stipator in flight. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Eristalis stipator in flight. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Eristalis stipator in flight. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

See you! Off flies Eristalis stipator, heading for another blossom. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
See you! Off flies Eristalis stipator, heading for another blossom. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

See you! Off flies Eristalis stipator, heading for another blossom. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Wednesday, August 16, 2017 at 5:12 PM

The Monarch Butterflies Arrive!

A male monarch visits the Mexican sunflower patch in the Garvey pollinator garden. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A little haggard, a little worn, a little ragged, a little torn. But there she was on Monday, Aug. 1, the first monarch of the season to lay eggs in our little pollinator garden in Vacaville, Calif. She found the milkweed, but that was AFTER the...

A male monarch visits the Mexican sunflower patch in the Garvey pollinator garden. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A male monarch visits the Mexican sunflower patch in the Garvey pollinator garden. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A male monarch visits the Mexican sunflower patch in the Garvey pollinator garden. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Oops! Time to leave. This male monarch was spooked by longhorn bees targeting him as he nectared on the Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Oops! Time to leave. This male monarch was spooked by longhorn bees targeting him as he nectared on the Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Oops! Time to leave. This male monarch was spooked by longhorn bees targeting him as he nectared on the Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A female monarch stops at the tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A female monarch stops at the tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A female monarch stops at the tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

The female monarch spreads its wings. She ended up laying eggs on the tropical milkweed and showy milkweed. Note how tattered she is--the predators missed!(Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
The female monarch spreads its wings. She ended up laying eggs on the tropical milkweed and showy milkweed. Note how tattered she is--the predators missed!(Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

The female monarch spreads its wings. She ended up laying eggs on the tropical milkweed and showy milkweed. Note how tattered she is--the predators missed!(Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Tuesday, August 1, 2017 at 4:51 PM

What Are Those Red and Black Bugs on Milkweed?

Yule ornaments? No, just milkweed bugs about to reproduce. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Got milkweed? Then you probably have milkweed bugs. All summer and into fall, we spotted the familiar reddish, black and white bugs scurrying around on our showy milkweed, Asclepias speciosa, and tropical milkweed, Asclepias curassavica. Showy bugs on...

Yule ornaments? No, just milkweed bugs about to reproduce. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Yule ornaments? No, just milkweed bugs about to reproduce. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Yule ornaments? No, just milkweed bugs about to reproduce. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Close-up of the Small Milkweed Bug, Lygaeus kalmii. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Close-up of the Small Milkweed Bug, Lygaeus kalmii. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Close-up of the Small Milkweed Bug, Lygaeus kalmii. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Seed pod of the showy milkweed, Asclepias speciosa. (Photo by  Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Seed pod of the showy milkweed, Asclepias speciosa. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Seed pod of the showy milkweed, Asclepias speciosa. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A milkweed bug and a buffet of seeds from the showy milkweed, Asclepias speciosa. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A milkweed bug and a buffet of seeds from the showy milkweed, Asclepias speciosa. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A milkweed bug and a buffet of seeds from the showy milkweed, Asclepias speciosa. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

What? Monarch Eggs in October?

Monarch butterfly laying eggs on tropical milkweed on Oct. 10 in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

So here it is Monday, Oct. 10 and the monarch butterflies are still laying eggs on our milkweed in Vacaville, Calif. "Mrs. October" fluttered down to our tropical milkweed at 4:30 p.m. today and began laying eggs on three tropical milkweeds (Asclepias...

Monarch butterfly laying eggs on tropical milkweed on Oct. 10 in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Monarch butterfly laying eggs on tropical milkweed on Oct. 10 in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Monarch butterfly laying eggs on tropical milkweed on Oct. 10 in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Close-up of monarch eggs on tropical milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Close-up of monarch eggs on tropical milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Close-up of monarch eggs on tropical milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Monday, October 10, 2016 at 5:15 PM
 
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