Hello! What's Up?
I thought this would be a nice follow up to yesterday's post of a female monarch laying eggs. This is a fifth instar Monarch Caterpillar busy eating milkweed in my garden. (The eggs that were left yesterday should look like this in about 2 weeks.) He is on a patch of plants that I netted off to keep major predators out (like wasps who fancy medium sized caterpillars as a snack, or tachinid flies who like to use them as a meal for their own larvae). He's one of five big, happy caterpillars who are just about ready to wander off and pupate. I've given then an excellent chance at survival without actually raising them in containers. Once they are all done, I'll cut the milkweed all the way back, forcing a second growth which I can use to feed late season caterpillars.
I chose this photo because it made me laugh. You can probably come up with a bunch of great captions for this, funnier than what I've arbitrarily picked. Feel free to get creative and leave me your best work in comments below!
I had a most excellent time with my besties. We drank wine, played dominoes, talked about life, reminisced about the fifth member of our posse, Lynn, who passed so many years ago but who is still with us in so many ways, and just generally did what good women friends who share so much history do. It is always balm for my soul to spent time with these women.
Evidently when I was out on my snake adventure Friday, I got into some grass with chiggers. If you don't know what they are, they are tiny, tiny members of the arachnid family who deposit a liquifying saliva on their pray...or on unsuspecting humans, which results in the most godawful itchy bunch of bumps imaginable. I've tried everything I can think of to reduce the itching, which is on the backs of my knees, ankles and around my (yuck) groin. I think that only time is going to fix this - in the meantime, I'm an itchy mess. Damned chiggers.
Quiet evening on tap and probably early to bed. Lunching tomorrow with some friends and also really need to get to the gym.