would take more than one page to show all the bugs
on the river. There are bugs in the air, in
the water, in the trees and bushes, on the ground...you
name a place, there will be a bug there.
spiders more than anything, and has been known to
call me bad names for pulling the boat into bushes
full of them.
Like most things,
there is a pretty side to spiders. Not only do they
participate in the food chain, but their webs can
be things of great beauty.
Early in the
morning you can see fields full of webs covered with
dewdrops. They look like diamond necklaces as the
dewdrops sparkle in the morning sunlight!
gross me out! This one clung to the paddle
as we were making our way through the pipeline.
There are plenty
of bugs in the water and some of them, like 'Gator
Fleas, have a nasty bite. They are called 'Gator
Fleas because they are small but can bite (supposedly)
right through a 'gators hide. Having been bit twice,
I have no problem believing it. They will find a
tender spot (like between your fingers or toes) and
latch on. Imagine a white-hot needle being driven
an inch into your flesh. That comes close.
big guy was crawling up the side of one of the trees at the cabbage palms at the end of the Sweetwater
canal. He had to be 4" long - not counting the antennas.
had no idea what kind of bug this was, but a couple
of readers sent info on it. One said "this beetle
is a long-horned borer. The insect family is Cerambycidae".
link which has some great photos and information.
This page says it is a Cottonwood Borer (Plectrodera
So now we
know. (Thanks to Sally & Jen for the info!)
bugs, like these caterpillars, are rough on
vegetation but eventually turn into lovely (non
sure about this one - he's very pretty but
looks like he could be mean!
- Twice a year we get invasions of lovebugs.
These are gentle harmless little bugs that gather
in large groups and fly about erratically while...well,
you can figure it out.
bite, but can make a mess on the bumper and windshield
of your car. It is possible to hit swarms of them
so thick that they can clog your radiator and cause
your car to overheat.
- We often see muddaubbers on the edge of the
water gathering mud, and recently I got stung twice
at the weather station, but we don't usually see
wasp nests hanging in the trees.
recent trip down the pipeline was different. We pulled
up in one spot to take a bathroom break and spotted
a moderately large nest hanging on a twig. We took
care not to disturb them and continued on our way.
Soon Judy spotted an even larger next hanging on
a branch right on the edge of the narrow trail. (Sorry
the photo isn't clearer, but I don't care to mess
with these meanies!)
the pipeline is much used by airboats, the trail
is narrow, and the nest is right on the edge, we
don't expect it will be very long before a passing
airboat knocks this nest down. Hopefully they will
keep speeding down the trail and not get stung!