Monday, September 26, 2011


Guess who flew in to show off its feelers one evening ? I was amazed at the length of those feelers! Aren't they impressive?! I captured these images with my phone before it decided to say goodbye.

Came across this one in the garden as I was trying to photograph a mustard yellow butterfly. If you click on the picture you'll see how beautifully coloured it is.

Happy Monday!! Hope you all have a good week!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Cicada Exuvia

When I saw these in the garden at Haflong (my hometown) I thought to myself...Aha...I'll get some good  shots! Imagine my surprise when I went closer and realized they were empty shells! Looking up online I found out that they are cicada exuvia. The last one on the tree is from a friend's garden in the same neighbourhood.

According to Wiki, cicadas live underground as nymphs for most of their lives at depths of 1 ft down to 8.5 ft. The nymphs feed on root juice and have strong  front legs for digging. In the final nymphal instar, they construct an exit tunnel to the surface and emerge. They then shed their skin on a nearby plant for the last time and emerge as adults. The abandoned exoskeleton remains, still clinging to the bark of trees.
The above photo was taken two years ago in my backyard. You must have noticed the split at the back on my second photo. You might find it interesting to see how the cicada emerges as an adult here.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Weekend Reflections/Blue And Green Dragonfly

Today's reflection photo is from a dragonfly I found flying inside the house at night. It fell a few times so I gently placed it on an artificial plant (below). Then I took it outside and placed in on the mussaenda plant. I was amazed at the colours! The frontal view in the second picture which was incidentally taken first, showed no indication of blue and green dragonfly resplendence! Please click on the picture to see the details.
To see more posts on Weekend Reflections, head over to James

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Some of the unique insects seen on our homestead in my hometown. All these photos were taken in July. I don't know the names of most of these insects but it was a treat to observe and photograph them. The spider was magnificent. Despite the size and the bright colours, they are not dangerous. It's a common sight to see them in their huge webs.

And now the dragonflies...........

My internet connection is very slow which is why I haven't been able to post sooner. There are are many photos I have taken and I'm simply dying to share them. Hope my computer woes will end soon....

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A Skink And Moulting Lizards

Guess who strayed into the house one sunny morning? A baby skink! If it hadn't come in I'd never have managed to take a photo like this one. Anyway after about ten shots I held out a newspaper for this baby to climb on. Then I took it outside where it disappeared amidst my plants!

 My garden lizards are going through their rite of passage...moulting! I found one on the branch of my mango tree where it certainly didn't want its privacy invaded. I understood.:)

And this one has shed more skin than the first one. Lizards shed skin in scraps often starting by a split down the back.

Monday, September 5, 2011


Of all the birds that come to my yard, the sunbirds have been most elusive. I hear them calling as loud as ever but any slight movement from stealthy old camera-carrying me has them flying off like greased lightning. So thank God for the pentas that has made it possible for me to take these shots. If you look at the collage, you'll see the same bird in every picture. The one in the centre was taken through the window pane from the room that looks out to some of my plants. That's where they come to feed often.

Comparing Google images I've learned that the one on the collage is a female Purple Sunbird. Where is the colour purple was the first thought that came to my mind. Well, like the hummingbirds, the males have iridescent colours whereas the females are plainer. I have seen the purple sunbird in other parts of the city but never in my garden. The female, as you can see is olive above and yellow on the underside.

Going by the dark colour, this one could well be a male. I found it perched on a thin branch of one of my guava trees.

Here are some facts from Wiki. Sunbirds are small passerine birds belonging to the family Nectariniidae. The family is distributed throughout Afrca, southern Asia, and just reaches northern Australia. They feed mainly on nectar but also take insects and spiders when feeding their young. Flower tubes that bar access to nectar are simply punctured at the base near the nectaries. Fruit is part of the diet of some species. Their flight is fast and direct on their short wings. You can find more info here and here.

Here's another attempt by me to capture these beautiful birds through the window pane on my camera phone. If you click on the picture you'll see the yellow underside. See how small the sunbird is! The thin stem only swayed a wee bit. As I type , I can hear their vociferous voices outside. Maybe I'll get a better shot this time?!;)

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Leopard Lacewing Butterfly

The other day I came across this beautiful butterfly on a justicia leaf. It gave me enough time to take these shots before it decided it'd had enough!! Although I had taken two blurry shots of this species two years ago, the photos were definitely not blog-worthy. The Leopard Lacewing/Cethosia cyane is found from India to southern China. According to Wiki, its range has expanded in the last few decades, and its arrival in the southern part of the Malay peninsula, including Singapore, is fairly recent.

My book of butterflies tells me that both sexes have a white band across black apical half of upper forewing. The white V-shaped markings on the scalloped edges of the wings make this butterfly most attractive!

Posted by Picasa

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Weekend Reflections/Floating candles

 Light is good from whatever lamp it shines.~ Author unknown

This week's reflection photo comes from these floating candles. To see the most beautiful posts on Weekend Reflections, visit James at

Hope you all have a great weekend!