More Than One Earth Hour

Posted: April 11, 2010 in butterflies, macro photography
Tags: , , ,

Check out the often overlooked three small eyes/ocelli (the three red spots) on the head of the cicada.

Red, Black and Beautiful

The red and black cicada sanguinea has a fairly wide distribution in South East Asia.  This is the first time I've seen an individual while out in the fields.

There have been reports of its record in Pulau Ubin.  But this individual was shot in grasslands on the West Side of Singapore.

The cicada emerges from its nymph form after spending most of its life in the ground burrowing and feeding off roots.  The nymph will climb up onto plants and trees and the adult cicada molts from the nymph, leaving the body case firmly attached to the tree/plant.

The molted body case/exuviae of this particular cicada have distinctive black rings between each body segment.

Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta ( C. Linnaeus, 1758 – Insects)
Order: Hemiptera (C. Linnaeus, 1758)
Family: Cicadidae ( Westwood, 1840)
Genus: Huechys
Species: Huechys sanguinea


The Green Baron

Green Baron butterflies are quite rare in Singapore.  Throughout the 3 years in the field, the number of times I've seen it can be numbered on both hands and the number of times successfully shot, less than 5.

This almost pristine female butterfly has a nick on the left wing, a common occurrence of butterflies as they age and tear, scar their fragile irreplaceable wings on foliage as well as lose them to predator attacks.

This female was photographed while she was puddling.  Although it is rare to see female butterflies doing so, female butterflies also puddle to get nutrients and water (Ref:

The young of the Green Baron feed on mistletoe, a host plant shared with young of other butterfly species.  The full life history can be found here:

The Female Common Red Flash

The butterfly was previously described here:

On this odd occasion, the rare lone Common red flash female was wandering by herself with no signs of any dog-fighting territorial males anywhere. 

More Than One Earth Hour

On March 27th last month, the world celebrated Earth Hour.  126 countries pledged their support and 13,870 iconic landmarks were dimmed in support of one of the world's most popular conservation efforts. 

WWF admits in an interview with the Guardian that the real purpose of Earth Hour was to raise awareness about our environmental problems (Ref:

Earth Hour seems to enjoy considerable popularity and success in this area.  But is this increased awareness enough to make a difference?

During the past month alone, the UN Wildlife body rejected the blue fin trade ban in spite of plummeting blue fin populations, leaving their fate to the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas, which had demonstrated its own inability to enforce its own quotas.  The bottomline?  The money made from a single tuna far outweighed any increase of awareness for the environment and conservation in Japan (Ref:

Only recently, on an even greater international scale, the Copenhagen Climate Summit in December 2009 failed to result in a binding treaty on participating countries to undertake positive and cooperative action to reduce CO2 emissions.  The cause?  Both developing and developed countries were not willing to make sacrifices on their own parts to cooperate to make a difference, in spite of their awareness of increasing environmental problems which were not going to go away (Ref:

In a different yet similar context, some people who viewed Harsono's dead butterfly and bee installation failed to see the macabre significance of killing animals for art (Ref:

It is hoped that that the awareness raised by a one humble Earth Hour will develop into something much more: a greater consciousness and love for something greater than our own selfish survival and a re-establishment of our place within the balance of Nature instead of without.

But will this be too little, too late?

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  1. Lauri says:

    I often want to despair over our (humans) pathetic lack of drive to give up ANYthing to help the earth. That said I do realize that recycling and making our cars greener is very popular…more popular than it ever has been. So…I guess we just keep trying!

  2. That's true. But the rate at which we change is so miniscule compared to the rate at which we destroy… I don't know whether to panic! O_O

  3. Tod Dillon says:

    I am am excited too with this question. You will not prompt to me, where I can read about it?

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