Posts Tagged 'Odonata'

Darning (?)

Common Green Darner dragonflies (Anax junius).
This is a migratory species, one of the first seen in the spring and one of the last seen in the fall as they move up and down North America. Male is grasping the female as she oviposits, laying her eggs in the lake in Woodlawn Cemetery. Not all Odonata do it this way: in some species, the female will be on her own; in some, the male will be patrolling nearby; and, in some species, as these, the male will continue to stay attached after fertilization.

So far, the only other Odonata action I’ve seen in NYC this season have been a couple of big blue darners of some kind patrolling a sunny path filled with Diptera at Jamaica Bay. They did not pause for photographs. Word on the street is that there are an extraordinary number of dragonflies around the NYC metropolitan area; evidently northwest winds created an unusual fallout situation yesterday. I’ll to keep my eyes open today.

***
Going to use my pulpit here to print this NYC City Council Resolution (No. 864). Wordy, aspirational (what the last sentence actually means isn’t addressed), but this gives a good sense of the interconnected challenges largely going unmet here in the wealthiest city in the country, not to mention the rest of the nation. Contact your council member to get it passed.

Resolution declaring a climate emergency and calling for an immediate emergency mobilization to restore a safe climate.

By Council Members Kallos and Constantinides

Whereas, On April 22, 2016, world leaders from 174 countries and the European Union recognized the threat of climate change and the urgent need to combat it by signing the Paris Agreement, agreeing to keep warming well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C; and

Whereas, On October 8, 2018, the United Nations International Panel on Climate Change (“IPCC”) released a special report, which projected that limiting warming to the 1.5°C target this century will require an unprecedented transformation of every sector of the global economy over the next 12 years; and

Whereas, On November 23, 2018, the United States Fourth National Climate Assessment (“NCA4”) was released and details the massive threat that climate change poses to the American economy, our environment and climate stability, and underscores the need for immediate climate emergency action at all levels of government; and

Whereas, According to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), global temperatures in 2018 were .83°C (1.5°F) warmer than the 1951 to 1980 mean, and the past five years are collectively the warmest in modern history; and

The death and destruction already wrought by climate change demonstrates that the Earth is already too hot for safety, as attested by increased and intensifying wildfires, floods, rising seas, diseases, droughts and extreme weather; and
Whereas, World Wildlife Fund’s 2018 Living Planet report finds that there has been 60% decline in global wildlife populations between 1970 and 2014, with causes including overfishing, pollution and climate change;

Whereas, According to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, human activity has already severely altered 40% of the marine environment, 50% of inland waterways, and 75% of the planet’s land, and it is projected that half-to-one million species are threatened with extinction, many within the next few decades; and

Whereas, The United States of America has disproportionately contributed to the climate and extinction emergencies and has repeatedly obstructed global efforts to transition toward a green economy, and thus bears an extraordinary responsibility to rapidly address these existential threats; and

Whereas, Restoring a safe and stable climate requires transformative societal and economic change on a scale not seen since World War II to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions across all sectors, to rapidly and safely drawdown or remove all the excess carbon from the atmosphere, to end the 6th mass extinction of species, and to implement measures to protect all people and species from the increasingly severe consequences of climate change; and
Whereas, A sweeping overhaul of the economy that centers on equity and justice in its solutions is vital to our future and must include the following goals: dramatically expand existing renewable power sources and deploy new production capacity with the goal of meeting 100% of national power demand through renewable sources; build a national, energy-efficient, “smart” grid; upgrade every residential and industrial building for state-of-the-art energy efficiency, comfort and safety; eliminate greenhouse gas emissions from manufacturing, agricultural and other industries, including by investing in local-scale agriculture in communities across the country; repair and improve transportation and other infrastructure, and upgrade water infrastructure to ensure universal access to clean water; fund massive investment in the drawdown of greenhouse gases; make “green” technology, industry, expertise, products and services a major export of the United States, with the aim of becoming the international leader in helping other countries become greenhouse gas neutral economies and bringing about a global transition; and

Whereas, Marginalized populations in New York City and worldwide, including people of color, immigrants, indigenous communities, low-income individuals, people with disabilities, and the unhoused are already disproportionately affected by climate change, and will continue to bear an excess burden as temperatures increase, oceans rise, and disasters worsen; and
Whereas, Addressing climate change fairly requires a “Just Transition” from fossil fuels to clean, renewable energy that is ecologically sustainable and equitable for all people, especially those most impacted by climate change already and those who will be most impacted in the future; and

Whereas, Core to a Just Transition is equity, self-determination, culture, tradition, deep democracy, and the belief that people around the world have a fundamental human right to clean, healthy and adequate air, water, land, food, education, healthcare, and shelter; and
Whereas, Just Transition strategies were first forged by a “blue-green” alliance of labor unions and environmental justice groups who saw the need to phase out the industries that were harming workers, community health, and the planet, while also providing just pathways for workers into new livelihoods; and

Whereas, Just Transition initiatives shift the economy from dirty energy that benefits fossil fuel companies to energy democracy that benefits our people, environment and a clean, renewable energy economy, from funding new highways to expanding public transit, from incinerators and landfills to zero waste products, from industrial food systems to food sovereignty, from car-dependent sprawl and destructive unbridled growth to smart urban development without displacement, and from destructive over-development to habitat and ecosystem restoration; and

Whereas, Building a society that is resilient to the current, expected, and potential effects of climate change will protect health, lives, ecosystems, and economies, and such resilience efforts will have the greatest positive impact if the most dramatic potential consequences of climate change are taken into account; and

Whereas, Climate justice calls for climate resilience planning that addresses the specific experiences, vulnerabilities, and needs of marginalized communities within our jurisdiction, who must be included and supported in actively engaging in climate resilience planning, policy, and actions; and

Whereas, Actions to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions and/or drawdown greenhouse gases may be taken in ways that also improve resilience to the effects of climate change, and vice versa; and

Whereas, Climate justice requires that frontline communities, which have historically borne the brunt of the extractive fossil-fuel economy, participate actively in the planning and implementation of this mobilization effort at all levels of government and that they benefit first from the transition to a renewable energy economy; and

Whereas, Fairness demands the protection and expansion of workers’ right to organize as well as a guarantee of high-paying, high-quality jobs with comprehensive benefits for all as the mobilization to restore a safe climate is launched; and

Whereas, Common sense demands that this unprecedented mobilization effort address the full suite of existential ecological threats facing humanity in a comprehensive, integrated and timely fashion; and

Whereas, Nearly 400 cities, districts and counties across the world representing over 34 million people collectively have recently declared or officially acknowledged the existence of a global climate emergency, including Hoboken, Berkeley, Los Angeles, Montgomery County, Oakland, Richmond, and Santa Cruz in the United States, Bristol and London in the United Kingdom and many cities in Australia, Canada, and Switzerland; and

Whereas, New York City, as the largest city in the United States, can act as a global leader by both converting to an ecologically, socially, and economically regenerative economy at emergency speed, and by rapidly organizing a regional just transition and climate emergency mobilization effort; now, therefore, be it

Resolved, The City Council declares a climate emergency and calls for an immediate emergency mobilization to restore a safe climate.

Ischnura ramburii

Wednesday is traditionally Raptor Day here at B&B. Damselflies are quite the airborne predators, so….

This one is an immature female Rambur’s Forktail (Ischnura ramburii), spotted at Jamaica Bay with numerous others of her species. I’ve seen a male away from the Bay, in Green-Wood once. Several of the Ischnura genus have orange colored immature females.

Michel Edmond de Sélys Longchamps (1813-1900), a Belgian considered the founder of odontology, named this species after Jules Pierre Rambur (1801-1870), a French entomologist.
***

I wonder how many times Kavanaugh has committed perjury so far? His opening statement yesterday was full of them. While judges can be impeached for lying, this seems unlikely as long as we put all our hopes in corporate Democrats. The long march of the right to capturing the judiciary is almost complete. For generations, these corporate, fundamentalist fascists will try to stifle the will of the majority of us. It’s going to be a hell of a fight.

Damselflies

One of the Lestes genus spreadwing damselflies.Spotted in Sapsucker Woods. One of the differences between dragon and damselflies is that damselflies rest with their wings closed. Except of course for the spreadwings… I think it’s the Spotted (L. congener), but I’m not a 100% sure on that. I’d never seen it before. Spotted on the same trail, an immature female Eastern Forktail (Ischnura verticalis). There are three color forms for the mature females in this species. Hadn’t thought I’d seen this version, but checking my records, I saw that I had.

***

There are a bevy of actions against the poisoning of the Supreme Court by Kavanaugh this Sunday. #StopKavanaugh nation-wide.

Bluets & Forktails

Azure Bluet (Enallagma aspersum) male.Familiar Bluet (Enallagma civile) male.
Familiar Bluet female, one of three color forms for this species. When odonating, you will quickly see that it’s males who patrol the water. Females are often munching away elsewhere, and come down to the water to pair up and lay their eggs in the wet stuff.Orange Bluet (Enallagma signatum) male and female.Fragile Forktail (Ischnura posita) male.Eastern Forktail (Ischnura verticalis) male.And another: some definite photographic challenges with these living inch to inch-and-a-half long critters.

Amberwing

Perithemis tenera.

***

I found this, on the carbon bombing of the planet and the fatalism that induces in some, interesting.

Odonata Season

I saw my first living dragonfly outside my windows on Saturday. I’d seen a couple of Common Green Darners here and there during the last few weeks, but spotting an unidentified dragon over 6th Avenue was the real start of the summer flying season for me. On the same day around Green-Wood’s Sylvan Water, I saw just a handful of dragons, but there were at least three species: Common Green Darner, Black Saddlebags, and one of the gliders. I also saw this Familiar Bluet damselfly, also one of just a handful. These were the first damsels I’ve seen this year. Also spotted this exuvia, or shed husk, of the aquatic nymph stage of a dragonfly. Several of the dragonfly species seen at the moment are migratory, but some are local breeders.

Weekend Update

It’s been absurdly warm. Lots of trees are nowhere ready to shake off their leaves. Bumblebees, which can take 60 degree temperatures, you might expect to still be around, but some of the smaller bees were out and about, too. This metallic green bee of the Agapostemon genus, for instance. But it’s late October: there isn’t much still blooming, still providing nectar and pollen.There were still Monarch’s moving this weekend. We noticed 15 in a small transverse of Brooklyn on Saturday, 35 on Sunday. More than a dozen each day were feeding at the inexhaustible Buddleja by Green-Wood’s Valley Water. Watching two Cooper’s Hawks soaring around each other, two more Monarchs kited into the binocular view. Monarchs float or sail quite a bit, coasting with the wind or tacking against it. They have been reported flying at 11,000 feet.

In addition to the Monarchs, this patch had some Painted Beauties, a high count of five Common Buckeyes (a record!), some Sulphur, Cabbage Whites, and several skippers, along with European Hornets on the hunt.A few Autumn Meadowhawks, including in tandem mating flight, Common Green Darners, and Familiar Bluets were also spotted.And a moth in the grass.


Share

Bookmark and Share

Join 579 other followers

Twitter

Nature Blog Network

Archives