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article imagePhoto Essay: Summer buzz gives way to sticky insects Special

By Elizabeth Batt     Sep 15, 2013 in Environment
Coram - Fall is knocking on the door in NW Montana and winter will swiftly follow. In the final lazy days of summer, these insects are living out their final hours.
With an extra hot summer in the Northwest, the bugs have been prolific. From hornets to yellowjackets and wasps, some even noted their numbers this year as, "something of a plague."
With an increase in biting and stinging complaints, the Flathead County Health Department has urged caution, but as the nights grow colder and shorter by the week, it won't be a bug's life for too much longer.
In the meantime, while the days are still hot, and water sources have dried up, these sluggish and thirsty yellowjackets gather around any water they can find.
Water bowls were bombarded by yellow jackets all summer long. Several would float happily on the sur...
Water bowls were bombarded by yellow jackets all summer long. Several would float happily on the surface on the water for hours.
This beautiful swallowtail butterfly which settled on a strawberry patch last month, perished just a few minutes after this picture was taken.
The state butterfly of South Carolina  this Eastern Tiger Swallowtail - Papilio glaucus  earns it na...
The state butterfly of South Carolina, this Eastern Tiger Swallowtail - Papilio glaucus, earns it name from the stripes it bears resembling a tiger and the lower edge of the hind wing resembling a swallow's wings.
Moths abound during summer months. A porch light works great for attracting them in. They often stic...
Moths abound during summer months. A porch light works great for attracting them in. They often stick around during the day, allowing for photo opportunities.
Fluttering from flower to flower  this flying lovely paused long enough for me to get a shot.
Fluttering from flower to flower, this flying lovely paused long enough for me to get a shot.
The aerial antics of mating dragonflies may look leisurely and graceful but according to Jennifer Ackerman of National Geographic, the mating ritual of these critters is anything but.
The males actually snatch the females in whatever manner they can and impose their desires on them in the worst possible way. Philip Corbet, a biologist from Cornwall in England, told Ackerman that these insects have been around for more than, "300 million years, which has given them time to figure all the angles on sex."
Dragonflies are considered   one of nature s great reproductive success stories   said Corbet  a Bri...
Dragonflies are considered, "one of nature's great reproductive success stories," said Corbet, a British biologist.
The adult life of the dragonfly does not last long and in areas with short summers, some may only live weeks.
In less than a month, all of these insects will be gone; their brief lifetime centered and focused on securing the next generation.
More about Photo Essay, Moths, Butterflies, Spiders, Insects
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