Saturday, November 12, 2011

Wooly Bear!

Reading Laura's last post, I couldn't help but notice that she had a couple of pictures of a wooly bear caterpillar. Hey, I've got a picture of a wooly bear too!

If there are two things I like, they are wooly bears and water bears, neither of which are like bears at all. Funny language, English...

I hadn't been aware that wooly bear caterpillars typically survive the winter by freezing, the caterpillars producing a natural protection from cell damage. Live and learn, I say!

The wiki also says, about the "bristles" of the wooly bear "The setae of the Woolly Bear caterpillar do not inject venom and are not urticant." Not urticant, I guess that means that the application of wooly bears wouldn't be good treatment for arthritis. There goes yet another get-rich-quick scheme... You know, for a guy who eats a lot of nettles, I still have problems pronouncing Urtica. I also mispronounce quite common words: salpinx, bordereau...

Speaking of nettles, the inedible flowering nettles have all gone the way of all annuals, and the nettles currently growing all over the place at my jobsite are the late fall batch of edible nettles. It'll be one last orgy of nettle consumption before the winter kills off the tasty, sting-y little green things.


Laura said...

Well, they certainly are cute little things and I wasn't really going to squash him as I indicated in my blog. I actually haven't killed a catapiller since Tony was in kindergarten.
We were out for a walk and I stepped on one. Tony yelled, "MOM! That's a living thing!" and started to cry.
I've kept my crushing obsession strictly to vegetables since then.

I'm happy to hear that he will survive throughout the winter. He is still sleeping on my front porch, in the corner, on the carpet. :)


Jack Crow said...

My father would collect and examine them in the fall. He would predict the winter by measuring the width of their stripe.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

They even have a song.

Dr.KennethNoisewater said...

Stephen Colbert is not amused by this entry. But that is lost on you, Mr. No TV.

Hunger Tallest Palin said...

Wiki on water bears (aka moss piglets):

"The most convenient place to find tardigrades is on lichens and mosses."

That's good to know. I mean, think of all those times you've needed a water bear ASAP and you wasted time looking under the kitchen sink.

BTW - Care to post a picture of the edible nettles for those of us who like to forage?

Smut Clyde said...

Helping HTP!

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Hey, now, no need to have him chase after Antipodean Death Nettles!