Friday, March 19, 2010

Persistance Pays

Sandy Nelson's Ozark Naturalist's Journal has several examples of the value of persistence.  She describes finding an egg case and bringing it into the house to observe.  I can speak from experience that the odds of being there at the time of delivery are very long, much greater than those of it starting to smell and my wife eventually pitching it out.  Not only was Sandy there, but she was able to record the event with her video camera.
If you check her story Persistence and Procrastination, you will be able to see the story yourself.  Click on "Persistence", then again on "Persistence" on the reply page it opens.  Your persistence will be rewarded with the birthing of a praying mantis from an egg case similar to the one Buck brought to the MN meeting Monday.  You will want to reach into the video to give the little bugger a hand!

The story below that one demonstrates another form of persistence, that which is required to identify an unfamiliar bug.  Rolling over a log, she found and photographed (see below) a beautiful (in the eyes of its mother?) Augochlora Green Metallic Bee.  Now I am sure that some of you would have recognized it immediately, but it would have taken me a long time to even identify what family to put it in.  She describes her search, rewarded by noticing its hairy legs.  For more information on her search, head to her blog at
 This bee belongs to the family Halictidae in the order Hymenoptera, a group that are commonly called "sweat bees", as they are attracted to our- guess what?- soft drinks on the deck.  (I guess we better change brands if they think it smells like perspiration.)   There is a lot more to learn about these bees, including some of the Halictidae family's tendency toward  cleptoparasitism at this Wikipedia article.


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