Monday, July 22, 2013

Sexual Dimorphism. Why?

Before they mated, I thought they were two different species.  An entomologist specializing in beetles would have known right off.  This is one of those situations in which I was glad I didn't know too much.  That made it all the more interesting to search.  The male and female are not only of different size - not unusual - but of radically different color.  Unlike most birds, the female is not exactly camouflaged, unless she always rests on or among bright red objects.  I've only seen her on white flowers - daisies and Brewer's Angelica.  Until this occasion, I had only seen the males on Brewer's Angelica.  I might be tempted to do library or internet research to find out more since the busy season for these beetles is nearly over.  But I do want to put in a good word for the practice of repeated observation and letting your curiosity run wild.

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