DOWN BY THE RIVER

in Amazing Naturelast month

A couple of days ago, I spent the morning photographing insects and scenery in the narrow valley by the river Mirna ...

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... only a couple of kilometers downhill from Sovinjak, the village shown in yesterday's post ...

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... and about ninety kilometers from where I live.

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Here you can see the Chrysomela populi ...

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... a beetle from the Chrysomelidae family. This species is very common and widespread all around Europe and temperate parts of Asia, but I have never seen it before because my southern, seaside area of Istra is slightly out of its range.

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Since I don't travel far, there aren't many opportunities to find something new in the nature around me, so photographing this colorful beetle was pretty exciting.

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The beetles were constantly moving, so I spent almost half an hour around them, trying to get a good-looking shot or two.

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Meanwhile ...

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... the rolling river was providing the soundtrack.

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This is the Tenthredopsis sordida ...

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... a sawfly from the Tenthredinidae family.

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Larvae of this species feed on various grasses and sedges. In their adult stage Tenthredinidae sawflies feed on pollen, nectar, and small insects like aphids, but most of them eat very little and some don't feed at all. I wasn't able to find information about the adult diet of this particular species.

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The morning sunlight was soft and beautiful ...

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... especially when seen through the leaves of the poplar tree ...

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... and the moss under the bridge.

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Here you can take a good look at the aforementioned bridge.

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This Panorpa communis scorpion fly ...

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... photographed on the humid vegetation near the river, was recently entered its adult stage. Only in the first hour after the metamorphosis, the insect is so pale.

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In this wide shot, you can take a better look at the narrow valley of Mirna bordered by cliffs and hills.

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In my language Mirna means quiet ...

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... and for the most part of its 52,8 km long flow, Mirna is a pretty quiet river.

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If you take a good look at this enlargeable photograph, you may notice a spider. A well-camouflaged Micrommata ligurina spider. This is a species from the Sparassidae family.

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After taking a more up-close look through the macro lens, I noticed that the spider has something in its fangs. It could be a minuscule insect. An aphid, ad example. Or a small chunk of some bigger insect.

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At one point, when I got a bit tired of shooting the macro stuff, I walked to the nearby river of asphalt and spent some time photographing the interesting and quite iconic old ruin across the road.

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Here you can see another interesting insect that I have never seen before.

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Unfortunately in this case I can't tell you the name of the species. These very small grasshoppers are definitively young nymphs ...

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... and, although I don't know anything about them, I'm absolutely sure that will grow much bigger.

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This green nymph ...

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... is considerably bigger. I found only a couple of them among many small black ones that I showed you in previous photographs. Here again, I can't tell you the name of the species. I searched on the Internet, but many species are shown only in their adult stage. Young nymphs can be pretty confusing.

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Here you can see the green and the black nymph together and compare the two. In this case, the difference in size between them isn't that big and obvious. Maybe, if I visit this place a week or two from now, the grasshoppers will grow enough to be identified more easily.

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After taking another wide shot, ten meters or so further along the river ...

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... I found another small grasshopper nymph.

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This one was brown. And just like before, I wasn't able to identify the species.

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After some more walking up and down the river ...

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... I came across this interesting caterpillar that looks a bit like some sea cucumber. This is the larva of the Melitaea phoebe butterfly.

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This lovely caterpillar surrounded by droplets, photographed a meter or two further, very close to the flowing water, is the larval stage of a moth. The diurnal Zygaena filipendulae moth.

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Some minutes later ...

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... I found this minuscule green leafhopper.

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This is the young, wingless nymph of some species from the Cicadellidae family. With many similar, almost identical-looking nymphs around, I can't tell you the name of the species.

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A bit later, in the same area ...

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... as the river was relentlessly creating small rapids in the shallow part of its bed ...

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... I found another interesting nymph.

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I don't remember seeing this insect before. Maybe I saw it as an adult, but this juvenile, wingless version was completely unfamiliar to me.

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It looks like another Cicadellidae species. But it could be a member of some related family in the order Auchenorrhyncha. After taking this photograph ...

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... my attention got caught by one single flower of the Ranunculus repens plant ...

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... so I continued shooting the river ...

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... and the wider scenery.

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This pattern made of flowers was photographed ...

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... on the beautiful inflorescence ...

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... of the Orchis purpurea orchid ...

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... that I encountered on my walk towards the shallow pond near the main flow of the river.

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This orchid can grow to be about a meter tall. It's much bigger than the orchids in the seaside areas around my hometown.

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This small spider, don't know the name of the species, was photographed on the large funnel web near the orchid.

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A bit further ...

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... I came across the Symphytum bulbosum flowers, and then ...

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... when I reached the pond ...

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... I found a turtle there.

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This is the European pond turtle (Emys orbicularis). I haven't seen this species since my childhood when the European pond turtles used to live in the pond on the outskirts of Medulin, my hometown. After taking a couple of shots ...

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... I continued walking along the river. Photographing the rushing water ...

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... and the quiet scenery.

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I found a minuscule Weevil, the Polydrusus pterygomalis ...

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... and this colorful Pyrochroa serraticornis, a beetle from the Pyrochroidae family. Another species that I encountered for the first time.

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When I returned to the pond, the turtle was on its way to disappearing under the lush, dense herbaceous vegetation a couple of meters from the water.

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I took one last look at the river ...

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... and walked to my car parked at the side of the road.

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Noon was near, the sun was high in the sky.

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The abandoned house was lit in a different way.

AND THAT'S IT. HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS WALK ALONG THE RIVER. AS ALWAYS IN THESE POSTS ON HIVE, THE PHOTOGRAPHS ARE MY WORK - THE END.

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So much bugs and insects along your walk past the river. They are cute.
And the flowers, orchids… great to find them. Here up in the mountain there are many wild orchids to be found. Love searching them.
The turtle was a nice surprise. Thanks for sharing @borjan 😁
Have a wonderful evening!

Hello @borjan, what a beautiful place and interesting animals and plants!. I knew "Mirna" as a woman's name, I didn't know it was a place. Thanks for sharing.

Yes 🙂Mirna is a very common woman's name in this area. I don't know any other toponym besides this river that is called Mirna.

Wow.. a collection of extraordinary photos, ranging from beautiful insects, clear rivers, and also beautiful flowers. I really like your work my friend, Thank you for sharing with us...

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