later in the backyard, while browsing through the grapevines (occasionally a source of interesting caterpillars), i found a grapevine beetle busy feeding on a leaf. i picked it off the leaf and immediately it played dead, legs tucked tightly to its body. after taking some photos, i put it back on a grape leaf. i've seen these beetles before -- usually on screen doors on hot summer nights -- but today was the first time i correctly identified it as a grapevine beetle. i always thought they were june bugs, but june bugs are a lot smaller and reddish brown in color.
i also uploaded a few more higher resolution (640x480) photos to my insect 2001 album on photopoint. i'm a little bit disappointed that i'm not going to costa rica this year, which was my safety vacation destination if nothing better came along. i can't even begin to imagine the kind of bug life i'd find in a tropical jungle setting!