Friday, September 30, 2016

Pink katydid dining on a rosebud.

Some gardeners would grumble at the sight of a bug eating a rose, but not I. Feast on as many rosebuds as you desire, exquisite creature! Consider the garden your own personal buffet!

And while a picture may be worth a thousand words, there are  moving pictures of this katydid to go with!

Watching this clip almost inspires me to write a poem... stay tuned for an updated version accompanied by a poetry recital soundtrack...

(It's a pink rose this pink fellow is feasting on, btw, or at least, it would've been.)

Romance abounds in every garden, if you know where to look... and how to look past...

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Ant antics.

After numerous observations, I have arrived at the inevitable conclusion that ants are mischief makers. I don't mean in terms of raiding your jam jar or sugar stash, I'm talking about their antics in the insect world. Not only do they farm other bugs, they tease them as well.

I was admiring a young stick insect resting on a leaf one day when sticky's quiet time was interrupted by three ants who took turns at speeding towards his feet. Amusing to me, and to the ants too, I suspect, but not to sticky. He did not like his feet being tampered with. He would lift up his back foot in protest... then his front foot... then his other back foot... The ants just wouldn't leave the poor fellow alone.

Maybe sticky had just stood in something sticky, which attracted the ants, but I doubt it. I think they were just trying to mess with his head. Or trying to get him to play tag... can't rule out that possibility, can we...

I saw some ants doing the same thing to a katydid, and managed to capture a bit of their mischief on film;

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Bug vs Wind: A Stick Insect with Stickability.

As aforementioned, I had to leave Stick Insect Metropolis behind, :( , and while I haven't found such a densely populated sticky community since, I have met a few on my travels. Yay.

I've also discovered that my phone can record bugs in motion. Yay some more.

Speaking of motion, and movement, and trying not to move in a counter productive way, I'm not really built for battling against the wind. I'm just too slight... When the weather is wild, I have entertained many occupants of cars that whizz past me as I try desperately not to become airborne on route to the supermarket. Lucky them. Sheltered from the gusts by their metal bits, while I try not to do a Mary Poppins. Grumble grumble. My spindly little frame isn't cut out...or perhaps... suitably assembled...for such challenges.

Anyhoo, we humans spend a lot of time complaining about the weather, but I think bugs have it worse, which has prompted me to start a short video series; Bug vs Wind, to highlight their daily struggles in this wild wind tunnel we live in. 

Our first film star is a sticky! Wahoo! Isn't she amazing. She's clearly got a system--go with the flow, but never let go... as you swing high and low... I like her MO... Inspirational stuff, if you ask me. Why pay a life coach/therapist when one can glean free pearls of wisdom for surviving in this adapt-or-die world, just by spying on bugs?

The video is too large to upload here so you'll have to wander over to youtube to admire this stick insect with stickability.

This last photo is of our film star taking a well earned breather. Such composure. Hard not to be impressed, really.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Introducing the Camdeerhund

When I went to get my washing in one day, I discovered this intriguing creature clinging to my top. Naturally, I raced back inside to get my camera, but before I could take a photo, it relocated-to my face. Ahem. I waited patiently for it to review its surroundings and I'm relieved to report that it saw sense and flew over to my finger instead. 

It was a bit tricky taking the picture with one hand, but we got there in the end. I can't show you the original because that's on my no longer functional laptop, so this photo of a photo will have to suffice. I think it does this bug justice though, showing off its fascinating form.

I have named it a Camdeerhund, because it has a camel's hump, a reindeer's antlers, and cute little legs reminiscent of a Dachshund... A new species, perhaps...?

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Code Bee

Out of all the BIPS (Bugs in Peril) I find, the humble bumbles, a.k.a. flying teddy bears, make up a hefty percentage. They just seem to run out of steam, in the most unbumble friendly know... in driveways and in the middle of footpaths. Good grief. And I thought I needed a minder.

I found one in the driveway recently, so I carted the docile fellow into my kitchen for resus. That's not him posing for this photo shoot, btw. There was no time for such indulgences. Things were dire. He wasn't very lively. I wasn't very hopeful that he would ever be lively again. 

It's remarkable what a little sugar can do. I dissolved some sweet stuff in water in a spoon, and bumble got stuck right in. They're so cute, aren't they, with their little built-in straws. In no time at all, he was all sugared up and rearing to go. I could feel the dramatic change in his energy levels vibrating through my hand. He went from a flat line to full throttle in a matter of seconds. Talk about a sugar buzz. 

Only problem was that he got it into his dear little head that the next task on his to do list was to fly up my sleeve. I did say, politely, "No, Mr Bumble! The flowers are not up there!" but he kept trying to burrow his way under my polar fleece regardless.

I think he may have had a little too much sugar... We've all been there... I confess I got a little panicky because I could see that having a bumble bee speeding towards ones elbow might not end well. 

After a stern word or two, I did manage to persuade him to take a moment to reassess his flight plan from the comfort of a small aesthetically pleasing rock, nestled amongst the nasturtiums. Phew. 

As much as I would've liked to have fetched my camera for a recovery picky, I decided it was imperative that my sleeves and I retreat back indoors, just in case he took off in our direction.

The moral of the story? Even bumbles need to watch their sugar intake. And when reviving bees, roll up those sleeves. As if I needed to say that out loud...

Sunday, July 3, 2016

And we're back...

Yes, well, been a while hasn't it. I didn't deliberately abandon my blog, just so you know, my disappearance was the result of an internet connectivity issue. First my computer decided to no longer let me post anything on here (unsupported browser issue, on account of the unsupported operating system issue, on account of the old clunker of a computer issue) and then it wouldn't even let me access the internet. I did try and post from a library, but couldn't get into my account. Tricky. Then I had no flat to live in either and things have been a little topsy turvy since.

Anyhoo, the important thing is that I have just discovered that blogger has a cell phone app, so here I am, again, to continue my obsession with bugs! Yay! Rest assured that I have been busy collecting photos of adorable bugs in the hope that I would get back online again to share them with other insect admirers so expect an avalanche of pictures in the months to follow. Have a few films to woo you with too, including sticks insects in motion.  Memorable stuff.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Aliens in my garden.

This sweet young maiden seems to have some sort of green garden slime on her back. Might be part of her disguise, I guess, helping her to blend in with her photo shoots...

I know this next picture is slightly out of focus, but it intrigues me. With her face and front legs all blurry, I think she almost looks like a member of the Army of the Dead, from the Lord of the Rings. It's possible you may not see what I see, of course...

Another option is that those two dark circles on either side of her middle are in fact eyes, meaning that she isn't a stick insect after all, but an alien creature with no body, a long wispy beard, and a cone head...Surely I'm not alone here...?