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The walk to Barranca Grande

Saturday, June 25, 2011 | 0 comments

In the morning we went to "La Rotunda" to take the bus to Cosautlán. We had been to Cosautlán last April, but had to cut that trip short because of rain. I wanted to explore the slopes of a barranca, hoping to find scorpions belonging to the genus Megacormus; scorpions that can hide in rotting wood or cracks in rocks, and can be hard to find.

The bus to Cosautlán, La Rotunda, Xalapa.
The bus to Cosautlán, La Rotunda, Xalapa.

Close to 9:30 we got on the bus and were on our way to Cosautlán. But where to get off the bus? On the way I decided to get off the bus where we could see a small town down in a huge canyon. I had found this town with Google Earth and it was aptly named Barranca Grande. And after a trip of nearly one hour and a half we arrived at the exact spot and got off the bus.

A view of the big canyon; "Barranca Grande".
A view of the big canyon; "Barranca Grande". (large)

Since there was a good road down into the canyon we decided to follow it. The plan was that we would look for a small side dirt track we could follow, into the woods, where I was hoping to find scorpions hiding underneath bark of rotting logs.

We saw a lot of Crimson patch Checkerspots (Chlosyne j. janais) flying around and nourishing themselves from wet parts to the side of the road. After some patience I managed to take a photo of one specimen, resting on the soil..

Crimson-patch Checkerspot (Chlosyne j. janais) on the road.
Crimson-patch Checkerspot (Chlosyne j. janais) on the road.

Later, more down, we also saw a Chlosyne sp. with yellow marks on the wings. Based on photos on the Internet I guess it could have been the Cream-banded Checkerspot (Chlosyne melanarge). I tried to take photos of it; the butterfly often rested on the road, but each time I carefully got close, it flew up, and landed some distance away from me. After like ten of those turns I decided to give up, hoping a better opportunity would present itself later today.

Another view of the big canyon; "Barranca Grande"
Another view of the big canyon; "Barranca Grande" (large)

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