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Saturday, 18 April 2015

Night Walk At Venus Drive (17 Apr 2015)

It was about a month since I went to Venus Drive and so I decided to go there to take a look.

It has been very hot in Singapore for the past week and it was reported that the temperature will continue to be high (up to 34 deg C) for the next two weeks. Thankfully when I reached the place, the temperature was very much cooler compared to at my home, even though there was hardly any wind blowing at the place.

One of the interesting sights at the place was this 25 mm Dark-sided Chorus Frog (Microhyla heymonsi). I was rather surprised to find it sitting on top of a small plant and remained motionless when I photographed it in close range.


The first beetle for the trip was a small 3 mm Darkling Beetle, found on the trunk of a tree encrusted with some lichen like growth.


I came to a spot with waist-high grass and was surprised to find this commonly encountered Chafer Beetle (Apogonia expeditionis) eating a blade of grass. I have always thought that their primary food is plant leaves and not grass.


Near to the waist-high grass patch was a row of small trees and on one of them was this 5 mm Darkling Beetle.


Moving to the small grass knoll that I would usually find different Leaf Beetles in the day time, I am glad to be able to find a Leaf Beetle (Lema rufotestacea) resting on a blade of grass.


I was rather surprised to find this Ladybird Beetle larvae moving actively on a rubber tree leaf when I walked past a low rubber tree.


How I know that the beetle larvae was a Ladybird Beetle larvae was because of the presence of several of this lovely yellow Ladybird Beetle (Illeis koebeiei).


Moving to a small patch of giant elephant ear plants, I am happy to still find this Ant-like Flower Beetle (Anthelephila cyanea).


The highlight of the trip was the encounter of a colony (about 20 specimen) of this Pleasing Fungus Beetle (Amnlyopus vittatus) on a fallen fish-tail palm. This is the first time that I see so many of this beetle in one location.


On the same palm tree were several of this brownish beetle. This got me thinking whether it is a morph of the Amblyopus vittatus Pleasing Fungus Beetle as they looked alike in shape, except for the color and pattern on the elytra.


A stone's throw from the Pleasing Fungus Beetle were several Tiger Beetle (Cicindela aurulenta). This particular specimen has one leg shorter than the rest.


Coming to the "clearing", I was disappointed to only find one of this 10 mm Darkling Beetle as many of the logs at the place are once again being covered by creepers.


Directly above the Darkling Beetle was a Leaf Beetle resting on a leaf.


Before moving away from the "clearing", I managed to find two 3 mm Fungus Beetle, centimeters apart on a tree trunk.



It was getting late and so I decided to set the new third "snow tree" as my turning back point. While heading towards the "snow tree", this beetle larvae was found along a cut mark on a tree.


Along the side of the trail was several badly broken up logs and on it was this Darkling Beetle (Ceropria superba). Sadly, this is the only specimen I found for the night. This is unusual as this type of beetle is commonly seen in Venus Drive.


It was about 20 meters from the "snow tree" that I found this shiny Chafer Beetle. It looked very much like the Apogonia expeditionis Chafer Beetle but it is much broader and the coloration is dark metallic bronze.


On a fallen log next to the "snow tree" were several of this Fungus Weevil (Eucorynus crassicornis). Photographing this beetle was a bit of a challenge as it was rather active walking around, only resting long enough for me to take one or two photographs at a time.


The "snow tree" is in "full bloom" as there was a thick layer of wood dust at the base of the tree. On the tree were several of this Fungus Weevils (Anthribus wallacei), with both male and female specimens next to each other. The female specimen has a shorter antennae compared to the male.



On the tree was also a Flat Bark Beetle. I have wrongly identified this beetle as Catogenus rufus, until being informed by an anonymous person; I did some check again and agreed that I have wrongly identified this beetle all this while.


Interestingly, I was not able to find any of the Catascopus dalbertisi Ground Beetle which was in abundance on the tree the last time I was here. After looking around the tree, I only managed to find this small metallic Ground Beetle.


On a tree next to the "snow tree" was a Darkling Beetle (Ceropria induta) found on the underside of a large branch.


On the same tree branch was a small 3 mm Ground Beetle (Minuthodes multisetosa).


In a crevice of the branch were several of this Fungus Beetle (Episcapha quadrimacula). Notice that these beetles looked dusty due to the "snow tree".


Before turning back, I decided to explore the vegetation near to the "snow tree". On one of the tall plants, I was thrilled to find this cute Click Beetle (Xanthopenthes schawalleri).


Next to the Click Beetle was a dying palm tree and on it were several of this small 2 mm Fungus Beetle (Beccariola coccinella).


The last beetle for the trip was a black color Ground Beetle which looked very much like a cockroach, which is very common at the place.


This trip was pretty fruitful given the number of beetles found, even though I didn't find any first-time-encountered beetle. It was also an interesting trip as on this trip I also encountered a 1 meter black cobra eating a Painted Bull Frog and a large 50 mm cockroach with red spots on its back.