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Critter of the Week

Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by Richmond SPCA.

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Where Spotted: Tuckahoe Creek Park
Common Name: Handsome Meadow Katydid
Scientific Name: Orchelimum pulchellum
Length: 18-23 mm

Quick Facts Courtesy of Captial Naturalist

  • It sings in low vegetation and is usually associated with water, calling mostly during the day and occasionally at night.
  •  As in most Orthopterans, the males do the “singing” which is actually called stridulation and is achieved by rubbing their wings. Other Orthopetrans use their legs or combination with wings, while some like the Camel Crickets we find in our basements are wingless and do not call at all.
  • The Genus name is Greek for “I dance in the meadow” and the species name simply means “pretty.”
  • In general, grasshoppers differ from katydids in having short antennae while katydids have long antennae.
  • They will flip to the back side of the stem or stalk and use it for both a physical and visual shield.

If you’re a fan of original content like those photos above be sure to give our Instagram and Dickie’s Backyard Bird Blind Bonanza on FB a follow and consider making a donation.




Tank at Richmond SPCA

Are you searching for a fun, friendly and adorable family member? My name is Tank and I’m the guy for you! I am pretty lonely here by myself, just waiting for my special someone to come along. Won’t you please take me home today?

Age: 8 years, 1 month
Gender: Neutered Male
Color: White / Brown
Size: XL (dog size guide)
ID: 4853142

Adopt Tank at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Critter of the Week

Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by Richmond SPCA.

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Where Spotted: Floodwall
Common Name: Red-shouldered Hawk
Scientific Name: Buteo lineatus
Length: 16.9-24.0 in (43-61 cm)
Weight: 17.1-27.3 oz (486-774 g)
Wingspan: 37.0-43.7 in (94-111 cm)

Quick Facts (Courtesy of Cornell Labs)

  • Although the American Crow often mobs the Red-shouldered Hawk, sometimes the relationship is not so one-sided. They may chase each other and try to steal food from each other. They may also both attack a Great Horned Owl and join forces to chase the owl out of the hawk’s territory.
  • The Great Horned Owl often takes nestling Red-shouldered Hawks, but the hawk occasionally turns the tables. While a Red-shouldered Hawk was observed chasing a Great Horned Owl, its mate took a young owl out of its nest and ate it.
  • Red-shouldered Hawks return to the same nesting territory year after year. One Red-shouldered Hawk occupied a territory in southern California for 16 consecutive years.
  • By the time they are five days old, nestling Red-shouldered Hawks can shoot their feces over the edge of their nest. Bird poop on the ground is a sign of an active nest.
  • The Red-shouldered Hawk is divided into five subspecies. The four eastern forms contact each other, but the West Coast form is separated from the eastern forms by 1600 km (1000 mi). The northern form is the largest. The form in very southern Florida is the palest, having a gray head and very faint barring on the chest.
  • The oldest-known Red-shouldered hawk was a female, and at least 25 years, 10 months old when she was recaptured and rereleased during banding operations in California in 2000. She had been banded in the same state in 1974.

If you like these photos be sure to give our Instagram and Dickie’s Backyard Bird Blind Bonanza on FB a follow and consider making a donation.




Wheat Thin at Richmond SPCA

Wheat Thin is an adorable girl that is looking for just the right home and environment for her. If you’re interested in learning more about Wheat Thin, please contact the Richmond SPCA adoption center at 804-521-1307 to see if she is the one for you!

Age: 5 years, 5 months
Gender: Spayed Female
Color: Black / White
Size: XL (dog size guide)
ID: 45419238

Adopt Wheat Thin at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

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Critter of the Week

Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by Richmond SPCA.

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Where Spotted: Dutch Gap
Common Name: American Coot
Scientific Name: Fulica americana
Length: 15.5-16.9 in (39.4-42.9 cm)
Weight: 21.2-24.7 oz (600-700 g)
Wingspan: 23.0-25.0 in (58.4-63.5 cm)

Quick Facts Courtesy of Cornell Labs

  • Although it swims like a duck, the American Coot does not have webbed feet like a duck. Instead, each one of the coot’s long toes has broad lobes of skin that help it kick through the water. The broad lobes fold back each time the bird lifts its foot, so it doesn’t impede walking on dry land, though it supports the bird’s weight on mucky ground.
  • American Coots in the winter can be found in rafts of mixed waterfowl and in groups numbering up to several thousand individuals.
  • The ecological impact of common animals, like this ubiquitous waterbird, can be impressive when you add it all up. One estimate from Back Bay, Virginia, suggested that the local coot population ate 216 tons (in dry weight) of vegetation per winter.
  • The oldest known American Coot lived to be at least 22 years 4 months old.

If you’re a fan of original content like those photos above be sure to give our Instagram and Dickie’s Backyard Bird Blind Bonanza on FB a follow and consider making a donation.




Phantom at Richmond SPCA

Phantom

Phantom is a recent RVA transplant all the way from Kentucky. The Richmond SPCA worked with Florida Urgent Rescue (FUR) in December to relieve crowding at two Kentucky shelters.

Age: 7 years,
Gender: Neutered Male
Color: Grey / White
ID: 49337693

Adopt Phantom at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

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Critter of the Week

Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by Richmond SPCA.

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on

Where Spotted: Maymont
Common Name: Eastern Amberwing
Scientific Name: Perithemis tenera
Length: 22-25mm

Quick Facts

  • The smallest dragonfly in Northern Virginia, and second smallest in the U.S. (only Elfin Skimmers are smaller).
  • Amberwings are reported to have the most intricate courtship of any dragonfly. After the male selects several possible egglaying sites for a mate, he flies off to find a female and leads her back to his potential nursery. To attract her, he sways back and forth, and hovers with his abdomen raised. Mating only occurs if the females approves – making this one of the few dragonflies where females choose the males.
  • Amberwings may be our only dragonfly that actively mimics a wasp. The markings and shape of their abdomens resemble a small wasp, but they take it several steps further. When threatened, they rhythmically move their wings up and down while pulsing their abdomens.
  • The common name refers to its eastern range, although this dragonfly does extend westward well into the central part of the United States.
  • In late summer, males can be seen along the shores of lakes, ponds, marshes and slow sections of rivers, bays and canals. But females are often found far from water, in meadows among summer wildflowers, as in the above photo. They’re probably hunting even smaller visitors to these summer blooms like midges, flower flies and tiny bees.

If you’re a fan of original content like those photos above be sure to give our Instagram and Dickie’s Backyard Bird Blind Bonanza on FB a follow and consider making a donation.




Mercury at Richmond SPCA

Are you searching for a fun, friendly and adorable family member? My name is Mercury and I’m the girl for you! I am pretty lonely here by myself, just waiting for my special someone to come along. Won’t you please take me home today?

Age: 2 years,
Gender: Spayed Female
Color: Chocolate
Size: L (dog size guide)
ID: 49324606

Adopt Mercury at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

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