Mourning Cloak Butterfly
Wing Span: 2¼-4”
Diet: herbivorous (tree sap, especially that of oaks, rotting fruit, and, rarely, flower nectar)
Clutch Size: several dozen
Did You Know: Among the longest-living of all butterflies (10 months), mourning cloaks survive the winter to adult stage by absorbing heat energy in their dark-colored wings.
Big Dipper Firefly
Diet: Mostly carnivorous (other insects, including fireflies, earthworms, and snails, plus pollen/nectar); some don’t eat at all, as the lifespan is only about two weeks.
Clutch Size: about 500 eggs
Did You Know: Their bioluminescence is beautiful, but collecting fireflies in jars stresses them and eventually leads to death.
Eastern-Eyed Click Beetle
Habitat: woodlands, forests, gardens, pruned trees
Diet: omnivorous (larvae eat decayed leaves and insects in the soil; adults eat nectar and plant juice)
Clutch Size: Tens to hundreds of eggs
Did You Know: When threatened, the click beetle drops on its back and plays dead. The “click” in the name comes from the sound they make when they flip themselves back upright. The “eyed” part refers to the two spots that resemble eyes, an adaption to confuse or scare predators.*
*Info from Travis Brady, director of strategic initiatives, Greenburgh Nature Center
Diet: herbivorous (in caterpillar stage, exclusively milkweed; as adults, nectar from a range of wild flowers, including milkweed)
Clutch Size: 300-500 eggs over 2-5 weeks
Did You Know: Adults only live 2-6 weeks and do not urinate or defecate.
Length: 1-4” (in prehistoric times, there were dragonflies that had 30” wingspans)
Mating Habits: A male dragonfly can increase his chances of fatherhood by destroying the sperm of his rivals; backward-facing hooks or barbs on their penises scoop out any sperm they find inside the female before depositing their own.
Diet: Carnivorous (small insects but especially mosquitos)
Clutch Size: hundreds of eggs
Did You Know: A dragonfly can see all the way around itself — its eyes have approximately 30,000 lenses.