Monthly Archives: September 2004

Little Egret

This was the first day out with my new telephoto converter (Raynox 2.2x converter for my Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ10 digital camera). The little egret (kosagi) was in a field and had its back to me when I first saw it … Continue reading

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Black Ratsnake

I was looking for snakes in the straw alongside the stream, but it still came as a shock to see this long black “crow snake” (karasuhebi) moving rapidly across the path. I’d estimate it at about 150cm, perhaps bigger. There … Continue reading

Posted in Reptiles | 1 Comment

Scorpion Fly

Scorpion flies (shiriagemushi) are pretty weird-looking creatures! They have curled up tails (hence the name) and very distinctive “beaks.” Despite their appearance, they are harmless insects. They are also a very ancient group of insects, some 25o million years old, … Continue reading

Posted in Insects, Mecoptera | 10 Comments

Hawk Moth Caterpillar

I saw the eye spots and black body of this caterpillar in the weeds and thought it was a snake! Sneaking up closer to get a picture, I realized that it was an enormous caterpillar (about 12cm long), but I … Continue reading

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Small Mantis

Information in Japanese on the different species of mantis in Japan: here at Wikipedia Order: Mantodea; Family: Mantidae Statilia maculata = ko-kamakiri (Small Mantis)

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During the summer months I see five or more lizards every time I step into the garden. I never get tired of watching them. This one was very tame and let me get really close before escaping, so I managed … Continue reading

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Leaf beetle

Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae (leaf beetles) Lema diversa = akakubi-boso-hamushi

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Giant Hermit Crab

We took a group of kids out to Ohshima Island, which is a 30-minute boat trip from our nearest port. Everyone was playing in the shallow sea and on the beach when one of the kids called me over because … Continue reading

Posted in Crabs etc, Marine | 5 Comments

Praying Mantis vs. Cicada

Aya (my daughter) called me into the garden to watch a praying mantis (hirabiro kamakiri) stalking an adult cicada (abura-semi) on the trunk of a tree. We watched for a while, but it didn’t seem possible that the mantis could … Continue reading

Posted in Hemiptera, Insects, Mantodea | Comments Off on Praying Mantis vs. Cicada