SITY: A Mix of Good and Bad

Outside today:

The number of buzzing insects in the yard is down. Way down. I try not to think too negatively about that. I imagine a beautiful garden nearby where they’ve all gone to feast, leaving only a few “idiot bugs,” who are too foolish to find that magnificent feast, to forage on my weedy flowers. I saw one carpenter bee, a couple of bumblebees, a few hornety things, several small bees (including green bees), a bee fly, and a couple of butterflies (which are not buzzy, but noteworthy). At least we still have diversity, even if we don’t have large numbers of any one insect type.

I sat outside in the late-day sun. A winter moth caterpillar was descending on a thin thread. I cut him down and killed him, smushed his guts out on the driveway with an old, brown leaf. Yes, I do feel bad about it, but I also don’t. This is the first year I can remember the wild blueberry flowers surviving past the first few days of blooming. Winter moth numbers are also way down, and that is a good thing. If I can do anything to lower their numbers more, I will.

Meanwhile, the gypsy moth caterpillars are hatching. They’re mostly still hanging out in their nests, but I found one on my foot today as I walked in the yard, and I spotted another on a daffodil. I probably ought to have smushed them, too, but I didn’t.

As I sat on the driveway, Mr. Greenbug showed himself. I’ve seen him several times recently. He moved very fast, too fast for me to catch. So I just watched quietly, and eventually he came over to me, examined my feet, even “kissed” my toes. Nature is a participation sport. If you sit outside to watch it, eventually it will engage you in its play.

Robins and squirrels scurried about on their business. I don’t know what they were up to exactly, but I expect it involved food. As I walked along the driveway, I surprised a snake, and it surprised me. It could not have been a garter snake (it was beige, not black), but I was not afraid. Whatever kind it was, it was harmless. There are no venomous snakes in Rhode Island.

The grass has grown high. My husband says it is time to mow, and I have given him my blessing. That means saying good-bye to my violets. I went outside with my camera, to try to memorialize a few of them before the “reaper” takes them. They were as unphotogenic as always. Being an unphotogenic person, I sympathized, as always. I might have caught a good picture or two. If I did, I’ll post them tomorrow.

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