Doing well iNatting in San Diego North County in October/November 2023

Well, Ed and I arrived from New York City late on October 29th for a 16-day stay, and we are now settled into our room (Room 108) on the ground floor of the Moonlight Beach Motel in Encinitas, with a fridge full of food in order to be able to make three meals a day.

I have been out iNatting numerous times already, very locally, but nevertheless I have been doing great. To my joy I have been finding all kinds of new things.

We are here later than in previous years, as we always used to arrive very shortly after Labor Day. I guess that because the calendar is moving into November, this time of year counts as late fall or very early winter, as opposed to being very late Summer!

Also, this is the year in which Southern California was impacted by Hurricane/Tropical Storm Hilary in August, which meant that they got a huge amount of rain all at once, after many years/decades of severe drought. As a result of all that rain, most wild or semi-wild areas here are still quite lush and green.

Either way, whether due to all that heavy rain, or perhaps partly due to my being here later in the season, I am finding a lot of organisms that I have not found before.

But there are also a couple of species which I found multiples of during my last visit that I am not finding at all this time: like the stink bugs that were on the Orchid Tree on this block, and the Lantana Stick caterpillars which were on the Yellow Lantana bushes a block away, but the lack of caterpillars is not surprising, because those bushes were severely trimmed recently.

I have also already found quite a few plants that were new to me and have cool names such as Devil's Thorn, Saharan Mustard, and Garland Daisy.

People who regularly read the iNat forum post where people report their finds of new Lifers might already know that I have found a Black Webspinner (a new order of insects for me!), a Western Plant Bug, a Yellow-V Moth, and one (now three) shells of the Trask's Shoulderband land snail, a critically endangered species which is endemic to the State of California.

I also found a Yellow-faced Bumblebee -- common apparently, but quite striking and pretty-looking.

On November 1st, my husband spotted a large-ish, very smooth woodlouse, on the sidewalk opposite the hotel. It was a Swift Woodlouse. That is new to me too.

Also on Nov 1st, I also saw two examples of the Grey Buckeye, which is now considered to be not just a color variety of the Common Buckeye, but a separate species, a taxon which only occurs west of the Rockies.

Friday Nov 3rd. Today something curious and weather-related happened. Walking back from Cottonwood Creek Park, as we got level with the hotel, we suddenly saw what seemed to be a striking, curling, narrow plume of something like smoke coming up the road from the direction of the beach. I wondered if it was indeed smoke, or perhaps a plume of dust from the construction that is taking place alongside the creek as it approaches the beach. But the cloud increased in size, and decreased somewhat in intensity, and I could not smell or taste anything at all, so I realized it was not smoke or dust, but sea fog! Then, as we sat outside in the hotel courtyard, and as the breeze blew, we could sometimes actually see the particles of moisture in the fog. I think perhaps the weather is turning colder now.

Sunday Nov 5th -- This would be Guys Fawkes Day if we were in the UK. We went to Ki's for lunch with our friends Barry and Jeannie who had driven here from Fallbrook, and afterwards we went to Cardiff State Beach, and then briefly to Swami's, but only on the clifftop. On the Cardiff Beach I found a small clump of washed-up Ostrich-Plume Hydroids, which was new to me, as well as a broken small Green Abalone shell, which was a new iNat record for me. And I also found an intact soft coral, genus Muricea, which was another lifer.

On Thursday November 9th on the outside of a window of room 101, here on the ground floor of the Motel, I saw an Alfalfa Moth. That was a new lifer:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/190535200

Friday Nov 10th I found a couple of lifer plants at the edge of the coast road opposite Swami's parking lot -- California Croton was the first one, Coast Morning Glory was the second one. I also got a pretty good look at one of several nice moths there, but I was unable to photograph any of them. They were delta-shaped and mostly beige with a few brown spots.

Sunday November 12th. I got to see and capture a new-to-me Giant Western Crane Fly which had been hiding somewhere in the hotel room for two days after it flew in when I had the door and one window open.
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/190814342

Also on Sunday Nov 12th I got to photograph a West Coast Lady, new to me:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/190855780

Nov 12th -- I also found a Small Melliot plant -- new to me:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/190855940

Nov 13th, I found two little baby California seahares. That species was a lifer for me in the years since I first got onto iNat:
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/190956598

And I found several Ventura Hermit Crabs, which were new to me.

All in all, I did really great this visit, especially considering I was only here for not very long -- two weeks and two days. I found at least 21 lifers in 16 days!

Posted on 10 November, 2023 02:42 by susanhewitt susanhewitt

Observations

Photos / Sounds

What

Coulter's Matilija Poppy (Romneya coulteri)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 30, 2023 03:35 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Yellow-striped Armyworm Moth (Spodoptera ornithogalli)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 30, 2023 03:37 PM PDT

Description

On Cape Smilax.

Photos / Sounds

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 30, 2023 03:41 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Fiery Skipper (Hylephila phyleus)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 30, 2023 03:43 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Western Fence Lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 11:11 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

House Mouse (Mus musculus)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 11:21 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Trask Shoulderband Snail (Helminthoglypta traskii)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 2023

Description

This snail shell had apparently tumbled down from a small wild area which exists on either side of the railroad tracks here, especially on the west side, which is not accessible by foot.

Photos / Sounds

What

Puncture Vine (Tribulus terrestris)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 11:28 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Devil's Thorn (Rumex spinosus)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 11:30 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Telegraphweed (Heterotheca grandiflora)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 11:30 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Blue Statice (Limonium sinuatum)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 11:32 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Leafhopper Assassin Bug (Zelus renardii)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 12:25 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Yellow V Moth (Oinophila v-flava)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 02:33 PM PDT

Description

New to me.

Was in the hotel room.

Photos / Sounds

What

Cloudless Sulphur (Phoebis sennae)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 03:01 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Western Pygmy-Blue (Brephidium exilis)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 03:05 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Western Pygmy-Blue (Brephidium exilis)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 03:08 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Marine Blue (Leptotes marina)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 03:12 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Garden Snail (Cornu aspersum)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 03:24 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Leafhopper Assassin Bug (Zelus renardii)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 03:27 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Canary Island Palm (Phoenix canariensis)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

October 31, 2023 06:15 PM PDT

Description

Views of Moonlight Beach from Second Street during sunset.

Photos / Sounds

What

Bermuda Buttercup (Oxalis pes-caprae)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 1, 2023 11:54 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Petty Spurge (Euphorbia peplus)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 1, 2023 12:09 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Willow Apple Gall Sawfly (Euura californica)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 1, 2023 12:19 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Leafhopper Assassin Bug (Zelus renardii)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 1, 2023 01:59 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Swift Woodlouse (Porcellio laevis)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 1, 2023 04:00 PM PDT

Description

My husband noticed it on the sidewalk opposite the hotel.

Photos / Sounds

What

Pennsylvania Cudweed (Gamochaeta pensylvanica)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 1, 2023 05:07 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Rose-painted Semele (Semele rubropicta)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 5, 2023 02:28 PM PST

Photos / Sounds

What

Spiny Cup-and-Saucer (Crucibulum spinosum)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 5, 2023 02:28 PM PST

Photos / Sounds

What

Green Abalone (Haliotis fulgens)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 2023

Photos / Sounds

What

Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus)

Observer

susanhewitt

Date

November 5, 2023 03:00 PM PST

Comments

Glad you're finding some good stuff!

Posted by silversea_starsong 7 months ago

Thanks! I have been having a blast!

Posted by susanhewitt 7 months ago

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