Author Archives: Charley Eiseman

About Charley Eiseman

I am a freelance naturalist, endlessly fascinated by the interconnections of all the living and nonliving things around me. I am the lead author of Tracks & Sign of Insects and Other Invertebrates (Stackpole Books, 2010), and continue to collect photographs and information on this subject. These days I am especially drawn to galls, leaf mines, and other plant-insect interactions.

Bean Borer

Last August, Julia noticed a few holes in some string beans in the garden. One of holes had droppings pouring out of it, and we could see someone fuzzy inside. I opened this tunnel up for a better look at … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Birch Munchers, Large and Small

The woods behind our house were logged not long before we moved here, and as a result there are lots of black birch (Betula lenta) saplings around. Yesterday on my morning walk I spotted this amazing caterpillar eagerly devouring the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Adapting to New Menu Options, Part 2

One of the reasons certain nonnative plants come to dominate the landscape is that they are released from the specialized insects and pathogens that keep them in check in their native range. So I’m always interested to see what insects … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Moths From A Willow Leaf

Over the past few days, a break in fieldwork has given me a chance to start catching up on going through my photos from this year—I’m exactly five months behind at the moment. On March 19 I finally got to … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Giving Wasps Their Due

I often see pie charts like this one suggesting that about a quarter of all insect species are beetles. Suspiciously, other sources (e.g. here) say beetles represent about a quarter of all animal species, and Wikipedia goes so far as to say … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Introducing Brachys howdeni

The state flower of Massachusetts is mayflower, which no longer seems an appropriate name since it blooms in April these days (I even saw some flowers in March this year). Another name for this plant is trailing arbutus, and I’ve … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Life and Death on Mt. Greylock

This past weekend I attended my third Berkshire BioBlitz. At my first one in 2011, I barely left the parking lot at the summit of Mt. Greylock and photographed 166 different species of insects and arachnids. This time, Julia and … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments