Saturday, May 28, 2011

Imagine My Disappointment

It was late when I let the dogs out for the last trip of the night. I turned the light next to the door on and was very excited to see a beautiful green colored insect. Could it be that I finally would see an emerald moth. I'd found the caterpillar on Bidens alba a.k.a. Spanish Needles, its larval host some time ago, but never got to see a resulting adult.

I grabbed a camera and took several shots from my rather disadvantaged perch. I reached overhead and clicked and clicked and clicked some more. I ran into the computer to check on the quality of my shots. BOO! Horrible, barely discernable.

Back with the camera I went and luckily, the insect was still positioned on the siding. I put the flash on, clicked a few shots and ran inside to again check the quality. Eureka! Not the best shots, but clear enough to identify.

Hmm, doesn't look like any moth I've ever seen and the antenna are all wrong. Off to the yahoo search engine. "green cricket Florida". I scanned a few results and none of the pictures came close. I checked but couldn't find my specimen. Off to "bright green Florida". Up pop the photographs of bright green insects. THERE IT IS!

I click on the matching photo and oh HORRORS! It is a Green Banana Cockroach (Panchlora nivea). I immediately shudder and a creepy, itchy feeling came over me. I think, "Ok, it's just a bug, let's find out what it's doing here." In the information tab I read:

"Also known as the Cuban cockroach, this is an invasive species that first got to the US on shipments of fruit from the Caribbean. Like most cockroaches, it is nocturnal. It is a strong flyer and is drawn to bright lights at night. This species does not breed in houses and prefers to remain outdoors if possible."

Whew, although invasive, it isn't going to try to live in my house. I did a little more research and learned that some people keep these at pets because of their beautiful green color, which brings me to my next question on this fella. Is he called a Green Banana Roach because he likes green bananas? Or because he looks like Kermit?

I shut off the outside light and was thrilled it was gone by morning. Go back to Cuba and your green bananas.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

It certainly is Mother's Day around my yard. In the picture above, Momma mockingbird is incubating four eggs and seems to be saying to Poppa bird "I'm having these babies, at least you could feed me on Mother's Day". This nest, the second of 2011 is built in the front yard in a bottlebrush tree.

Second brood of bluebird babies starting hatching yesterday and there looks to be all five today, although siblings are covering younger ones to keep them warm until the day heats up, so I can only account for four sets of naked wings.

I saw a mockingbird couple hauling food to a nest in my neighbor's side yard and there are grackles feeding babies that are high up in a young pine, also in my neighbor's yard.

So, plant for the birds and they will come! Then you too can have a fun day, observing mother nature's wonders.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...