Friday, July 3, 2015

A Ladybug is Born

This was the scene yesterday in the garden. Dave and I just happened to be checking out the ladybird/ladybug pupae at the exact moment that one of them was emerging!

I wondered what this process would look like. Would the bug leave a case behind? (Yes!)

It retreated to the underside of the leaf. Ladybugs apparently have to harden their shells after pupating, and during that half-day hardening process they gain pigment -- including spots. They also have to hide from predators. So maybe that's what was going on.

I checked this morning and a few more have emerged. Even the shiny, hardened ones still look more or less plain orange, though. We seem to have a spotless variety.

Yesterday wasn't a bad day to be born, temperature-wise. The inferno of the previous day subsided as quickly as it came, and this morning it's even a bit chilly (63º F).

You'll notice that I always report temperatures in Fahrenheit. When we moved to England, Dave very quickly transitioned to the Celsius scale, but I still think in Fahrenheit -- in fact, it drives me crazy when I ask him the temperature on a beautiful, cool sunny day and he says, "23 degrees." I tell him to speak in real temperatures!


ellen abbott said...

so cool! lucky you were in the right place at the right time. one year we had so many monarch caterpillars on the butterfly weed and I was able to watch the whole life cycle from egg laying to emerging as a butterfly.

Sharon said...

What an interesting process to see those bugs emerge.

Linda Sue said...

I agree about the REAL is easier to understand, out of 100 degrees the scale is understandable. I asked my English frien about it and she said "you just know...." Your ladybug is cuter now.Catching up with all of your posts in the last month! GREAT! Delightful , entertaining, I don't even have to DO anything, just ooooo and awwwww. Thank you!

Elizabeth said...

Astounding. You should also be called Steve the Science Guy. Honestly, though, those pictures are thrilling.

The Bug said...

Cute bug! One of these days I think I'll just make myself grasp Celsius. And maybe meters too. We'll see.

e said...

I love these photos of your garden and the life in it. As for the weather, it is awful here...steam bath city.