Don't take rides with strangers...
Do you see that small hitchhiker on the lady beetle's back? It's a tiny white aphid nymph...and a moment after I took this shot, it was being consumed by this demure looking little beetle (see Extra.) The beetle was the tiniest one I've seen, only maybe 1/8 inch in length - but apparently with a very healthy appetite. Just like yesterday, there are loads of lady beetles eating loads of aphids in the garden today.
These Multicolored Asian ladybeetles, which are non-native to the US, will overwinter as adults, emerging on warm days in search of aphids and other tiny insects. In the spring, they'll emerge to mate, and will have multiple generations through the warm months. We see them in the largest numbers in the fall, on days like this one which are sunny and relatively warm.
Yesterday, my back was really bothering me, feeling like it was on the edge of some sort of spasm. Today it was no better when I got up, so I made an appointment with my doctor and am now taking a prescription dose anti-inflamatory and mild muscle relaxant. Should be better in a few days, then I'll set up some appointments with a chiropractor. Feels best when I am standing/walking and worst when I am sitting. So, Hubs and I had a nice walk on a wooded trail after lunch today - forest bathing. And if you want to know what "forest bathing" is - here's a brief description:
This is the healing way of Shinrin-yoku Forest Therapy, the medicine of simply being in the forest. Shinrin-yoku is a term that means "taking in the forest atmosphere" or "forest bathing." It was developed in Japan during the 1980s and has become a cornerstone of preventive health care and healing in Japanese medicine.
Thanks very much for stopping by - and have a lovely weekend. Our weather is predicted to be a more seasonal mid-40's tomorrow, so no more bugs for a while.