insect traps

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Greeted by Evening Chill

While Diana and Malena headed out on another night walk, Dan, Choru and I set up the mercury vapor light trap again in front of my cabin. As we tied the white sheets, and turned on the light, the wind was picking up speed. We had been warned that a “friaje”, a cold polar wind coming up from Patagonia, was heading our way. Despite the wind, the number of insects coming to our sheet was low, the diversity was still good, with some unusual specimens we had not sampled before.

At midnight, the friaje was firmly here: the wind was gusting (it seemed gale-force) with heavy rains pelting down. In the dark of my thatch-roofed cabin, I curled into a foetal position under the thin blanket while the temperature dropped from 90°+ to about 55°!  I hope my little wooden cabin, with its lower solid half walls, upper screening, and thatched roof will last the night. The plop-plop of rain leaking through, the gusting wind, the thunder, and the occasional crack and crash of breaking tree limbs ensure that I am alert and attentive all night long. -Caroline