War Darned Eagle. Orange and Blue. So until I can get a positive ID on this coital couple, they are Auburn Beetles.
Update 1146AM : Move over War Eagles, these are Elderberry Longhorns or Elderberry Borers or Cloaked Knotty-horns.
I’d headed out to get a shot of Ann’s Folly (maybe I’ll show you tomorrow) but got distracted by the Elderberry bushes in bloom beside the shed and then noticed these inch-long beauties (less the interestingly-ornate antennae especially for the male.) They were not particularly cooperative and I’d have preferred the Canon Powershot on macro instead of the D200 with the 18-200mm lens on closest-possible focus. So far, the species has eluded my attempt to drill down into the Order Coleoptera for a scientific name, so Auburn Beetle is their operating common name on Goose Creek.
Yet these pale into the realm of the ordinary if you take a look at this wonderful collection of beetles from around the world. (Show your kids!)
How weird am I? I spent almost an hour scrolling through these, musing about the differences in eye size and placement, front leg ornamentation and the like, wondering do those distinctive features MEAN anything with regard to function or fitness for their particular niche in nature, or are they neutral genetic variations that are neither here no there with regard to survival?
That not enough? Take a gander, kiddos, at these Insectimals! Whimsy. And art. And perhaps a little distance from the norm. What’s not to love?