Sunday, September 27, 2015

A New Kind of Adult

 I started photographing the emergence of the Oak Treehoppers about a month ago.  This shot, taken by my driveway, shows a small group of juveniles and one adult of the olive-drab-with-spots variety.  I was seeing these near my house, in the foothills of Mt. Hough, and in ne oak tree on the FRC campus.  Then I stopped looking for them for a couple of weeks.
 This morning, on my way to town to look for some early-morning-light photos, I made a quick stop by the large oak tree in my driveway.  What I saw was a startling abundance of juveniles and a small gathering (above) of a different kind of adult.  In fact, today, all the adults I could find were of this very different color pattern.  Basically red, black, and white longitudinal stripes, a kind of 90-degree rotation of the juvenile pattern.  I've done a little reading on this, and all I could find is that adults come in two basic forms - the two I've shown here - and I have not found any genetic studies.  The differences seems much more dramatic than, say, the difference between blondes and brunettes, or between brown and blue eyes, in humans.
 Here's a shot of these "new kinds" of adults tending their young.
And, in another part of the tree, a hint of fall colors to come.

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