Nerd alert! In my latest video I get rather excited about the arrival of the ‘rain moths’ (Trictena atripalpis). The first rains of autumn usually brings them out and this year it was spectacular!
These moths are quite harmless, but may vary in size from relatively modest to rather huge (depending on how much food they consumed while larvae). Just listen to the sound a large one makes as it crashes into my microphone!
I hope you enjoy the video – as usual it’s short and sweet! Let me know what you think.
If you want to learn more about these moths, you can read one of my earlier posts by clicking here.
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I know my title is a lazy reference to a scene from the Monty Python movie The Life of Brian, but I think it is appropriate given all the recent talk about the decline of insects around the world. Does it matter if all the insects disappear?
Many (most?) people only notice insects when those insects are affecting them directly and in a negative way, e.g. stinging them, biting them, annoying them with buzzing, or chewing on one of their beloved plants (like the Grapevine moth Phalaenoides glycinae larva below).
I’m lucky to live in an area where Dainty Swallowtail butterflies occur. The larvae of these native butterflies have adapted to feed on cultivated citrus (such as lime and lemon) as well as native plants of the family Rutaceae.
So what do you do when big caterpillars are chewing chunks off your citrus leaves? Not a lot!
There is a line in my book Garden Pests, Diseases & Good Bugs which says: A citrus tree with a few chewed leaves is a small price to pay for the pleasure of observing beautiful swallowtails in the garden.
I hope you enjoy the video.
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