Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Lady Bug Madness Part II

After about four or five days the yellow eggs began to turn dark. The eggs were about to release their black, strange looking, inhabitants.
Lady bug larva feed off the left over egg parts for about two days. After that, everything is fair game, including their siblings and other unhatched eggs! The larva are about as small as a grain of sand when they first hatch out. As they grow they will shed their exoskeleton. This is called an "in-star" and it will occur about five times before the larva pupates into an adult beetle. If I can keep these creatures alive and fed during these stages, I will continue to photograph their development. Unfortunately, spring break is coming up and I hope to see our grandbabies for a week. Oh what a difficult decision, stay home and photograph bugs or visit the family. . . What to do??

Poor hopeless aphids waiting to be eaten by those cute little lady bug larva... Of course, farmers and folks in the plant industry might think otherwise :)

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