Longhorn Luck

While walking through Explore the Wild I noticed that Swamp Rose was in bloom. A closer look revealed a beetle and a spider on one of the flowers.

Swamp Rose with a longhorn beetle and crab spider (5/23/12).

The beetle is a flower longhorn beetle. To be more specific it looks to be Strangalia luteicornis. As suggested, adults nectar on flowers. The larvae feed on the wood of various trees and vines.

Swamp Rose (Rosa palustris) is a native rose, unlike the, unfortunately, much more familiar Multiflora Rose (Rosa multiflora) which was in bloom several weeks ago. Swamp Rose has single blossoms while Multiflora Rose blooms in clusters of many smaller flowers, multiple flowers = multiflora.

Note the white, multi-flowered clusters of the Muslitflora Rose.
Another view of the beetle and spider.

The spider appears to be a White-banded Crab Spider (Misumenoides formosipes). These crab spiders (crab spiders in general) are small but I’ve seen them pounce on prey much larger than themselves. I’m surprised this one hasn’t jumped on the beetle. This longhorn appears to have been lucky, so far.

Come on out to Explore the Wild and see what you can spot.

5 responses to Longhorn Luck

  1. Lew says:

    Maybe there is an instinct telling the spider something is dangerous?

    • Greg Dodge says:

      Perhaps, but I think that if the beetle had moved one little half step closer it would have been crab meat, or maybe beetlejuice.

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