Our group of last Sunday, although ostensibly a bunch of botanists, noticed lots of stuff other than plants. Among many interesting animals that we encountered were some of those most magnificent of beetles, the tiger beetles.
Sandy Spring Cemetery in Adams County. The hills of Kentucky loom in the distance. This old cemetery sits on the inside of a big bend in the mighty Ohio River, and is atop a gargantuan pile of sand deposited over the eons by floods. Such habitat - riverine sand terraces - are exceedingly rare as most have been obliterated by development, agriculture, or sand mining. This spot was safeguarded by the establishment of the cemetery long ago. A number of rare plants occur here, and that's what we were looking for.
I owe a debt of gratitude to Judy Semroc, one of Ohio's best naturalists, for determing the identity of this Festive Tiger Beetle, Cicindela scutellaris. Why is it festive? Crikey, just look at the photo, man! I don't know these critters very well, but Judy certainly does, and was kind enough to not only pin a name on this one, but share lots of other good information.