Thursday, June 17, 2010

Now I Can't Kill The Spiders Either?

There was a large hatching of Daddy Long Legs near the house, and we're inundated.

"Oh no Mama, you don't want to kill those, they're beneficial."

I'm quite used to this from Danny, but he did get a strange look this morning at the small grocer in town when he asked the cashier to see the large bug she'd just squashed.

"I have a field guide out in the car, if you want me to get it while you take the bug out of the garbage...I can have a look, if you want to know what it is."

I could tell by the horrified look on her face exactly what she'd just killed, and why she wouldn't care to be displaying it for shoppers. It probably was an outdoor wood roach, and the male ones are really huge. I mean, gigantic-and they fly. It is because of the wings that you see them indoors, flying in by accident, but to the uninitiated, they look like the biggest bloody cockroach on Earth. They very nearly look prehistoric. Anyway, she declined Danny's generous offer to let her know whether or not he bug was beneficial.

He spent a good hour this morning watching spiders crawl across the outside of his bedroom window. I can honestly say, I've never given spider behaviour much thought, though I suspect that I'll soon be expert on the subject.

The best story though-I mean, it is my fault for buying him the book, but really, I can't get over this, happened yesterday. I was washing up dishes and Danny came into the kitchen.

"Mama? Mama? I need a caterpillar, and I need you to cut it into three parts and put each part in a jar, but they need to be different sized hunks of caterpillar. OK? Mama?"


(Pulls out his insect book with experiments from the 1950's)

"It says you can attract ants to the jar, like a trap. The different sizes are a test, to see if more caterpillar will attract more ants. I saw a caterpillar in the mudroom...can I have a butter knife? Mama? Mama?"


Yeah, I should look through those science books more carefully before buying them at Library sales. There was this whole thing about cutting the wings off dragonflies, and fashioning prosthetic ones from balls of clay and fabric to see how long they could stay aloft. Great to know, if I run across any injured dragonflies.

I was going to say, There's one in every family", but actually, we already have an entomologist, so I guess this makes two.

My butter knives!

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