Tuesday, August 09, 2011
A seldom-seen caterpillar
I actually started out looking for a little praying mantis that I'd seen on my oregano plant recently. I didn't find him, but I did notice a little green caterpillar that blended in amazingly well with the little flower heads, now setting seed. Can you see him in there? I'll give you a hint: There's an ant on him.
OK, here he is close up, and still with his entourage. (or should I say ANT-ourage?) This is a hairstreak caterpillar, seldom seen because they're small and they blend in so well with their host plants. They excrete honeydew, which ants favor. (this, according to my son, Michael, is the real-life entomological equivalent of Slurm, and now you know that we are all Futurama fans in this house!)
Another view from this morning. I have put this oregano sprig in a little vase on my front porch. The ants have gone for now.