Water Striders in the Little Rouge Creek: Summer 2020

While out for a walk along the creek, I was fascinated to watch little creatures that appear to be from a science fiction movie. Water Striders:

Water Striders

Water Strider legs are covered in thousands of microscopic hairs scored with tiny grooves. These grooves trap air which makes the striders very buoyant. Even in a rainstorm or waves, the striders stay afloat.

Water Strider

Striders have 6 legs. The front legs are shorter and allow the strider to grab prey on the surface. The middle legs act as paddles and the rear legs are for braking and steering.

Water Striders

Mosquito larvae is one of the most important foods for the strider.

Water Striders
Water Striders
Water Strider

Striders are preyed on by birds and some fish.

Water Strider
Water Strider

Other flying life:

Song Sparrow
Asian Beetle
Asian Beetle
Ebony Jewelwing
Ebony Jewelwing
Ebony Jewelwing

Creek views:

Some botany:

Black Bulrush (Scirpus atrovirens)
Indian-hemp (Apocynum cannabinum)
Wall Rocket (Diplotaxis muralis)
Canada Anemone (Anemone canadensis)
Algae
Water Speedwell (Veronica anagallis-aquatica)
Water Speedwell (Veronica anagallis-aquatica)
Arrow-arum (Peltandra virginica)
Arrow-arum (Peltandra virginica)
Field Mustard (Brassica rapa)
Common Morning-glory (Ipomoea purpurea)
Birdfoot Trefoil (Lotus corniculatus)
Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia)
Buckhorn (Plantago lanceolata)
Herb Robert (Geranium robertianum)
Ostrich Fern
Multiflora Rose (Rosa multiflora)
Mushroom
Lilac (Syringa vulgaris)
Staghorn Sumac male flowers
Wild-basil (Clinopodium vulgare)
Riverbank Grape (Vitis riparia)
Privet (Ligustrum obtusifolium)
Wood-sorrel (Oxalis stricta)
Butternut (Juglans cinerea)
Butternut (Juglans cinerea)
Dame’s Rocket (Hesperis matronallis)
Dame’s Rocket (Hesperis matronallis)
Wood Nettle (Laportea canadensis)
Dame’s Rocket (Hesperis matronallis)
Celandine (Chelidonium majus)
Black Maple (Acer nigrum)
Goutweed (Aegopodium podagraria)
Goutweed (Aegopodium podagraria)

NATURE POETRY

Lady! in this night of June
Fair like thee and holy,
Art thou gazing at the moon
That is rising slowly?
I am gazing on her now:
Something tells me, so art thou.   – Alfred Austin (1835–1913)

Miles Hearn

1 thought on “Water Striders in the Little Rouge Creek: Summer 2020

  1. Lisa Volkov

    Fascinating information! Wonderful to see the botany, bugs and birds in that place!
    Thanks, Miles!

    Reply

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