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Discoveries

Colletes validus

While not exactly rare, the blueberry cellophane bee (Colletes validus) is a specialized one. Martha’s Vineyard, offering the sandy soils and large blueberry populations this bee requires, hosts a notable population of this species.

Stoneflies

With an aquatic larval stage, stoneflies (the order Plectoptera) associate with fast-moving streams with good water quality. While they are likely overlooked, Plectoptera are infrequently reported on Martha’s Vineyard.

A “Shore Bug,” Pentacora sphacelata

A bug photographed on the Felix Neck salt marsh in 2019 has been identified as Pentacora sphacelata (Saldidae) – a first Vineyard record for this “shore bug.”

a migratory silver-haired bat in flight

Bats in December?

Two attentive Vineyard naturalists document unusual December sightings of two migratory bat species.

Tropical Visitor at Lambert’s Cove

Normally found in warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, the Caribbean, and West Indies, a two-spotted cardinalfish was a recent startling find on Lambert’s Cove Beach in West Tisbury, Massachusetts.

A New Robber Fly Species for Martha’s Vineyard

The tiny robber fly Atomosia puella was discovered among bees collected in bowl traps in 2021 at Thimble Farm, Tisbury.

American Red Squirrel Sighted in Edgartown

Known on the Vineyard only from historical records and the contents of Native American middens, American red squirrel was recently documented at a bird feeder in Edgartown.

DeKay’s Brownsnake on the Move?

First recorded on Martha’s Vineyard in 2020, DeKay’s brownsnake has now been found in Edgartown, as well.

Megachile inimica Added to Vineyard Bee List

Megachile inimica, a large species of leaf-cutter bee, was found in the community garden at Thimble Farm in late September 2023. It representes the 197th species of bee documented on Martha’s Vineyard.

A Vineyard Moss Releases Its Spores

Two Vineyard naturalist, engaged an ongoing study of the island’s vascular plants and mosses, capture one of our native mosses preparing to release its spores.