Posts Tagged "bugs"

7 Things You Need to Know About Fireflies

Dear Kid,

So now that we know it’s summer (as proven by the emergence of lovely lightening bugs), it seems like a good time to talk about them.

Jars. The native habitat of fireflies. 7 Things You Need to Know About Lightening Bugs. DearKidLoveMom.comFirst of all, I should clarify my position on fireflies. They are bugs, and as such have far more than the appropriate number of legs. But they have LIGHTS! So as long as none of them land on me and use my arms as walking paths, we should be OK.

Here’s what you need to know about lightening bugs.

Fireflies’ lights can be yellow, green, or orange. They can’t actually change colors; different varieties of fireflies have different color lights. This isn’t really surprising because there over 2,000 kinds of fireflies.

Fireflies in the western US are energy conscious and don’t light up.

Which is unfortunate because lightening bugs are really pretty (read about that here) and their light is – wait for it – the most efficient light in the world. Nearly 100% of the energy in the chemical reaction that makes them light up is converted to light. (Incandescent bulbs only emit 10% of their energy as light; fluorescent bulbs emit 90% of their energy as light.)

Each species has their own flashing pattern designed specifically to attract females for a little nooky.

Mating is important because adult fireflies only live long enough to mate and lay eggs (no time for cuddling). The larvae live about a year (until mating season). Rinse and repeat.

Lightening bug larvae are carnivorous. When they have a choice, they generally order snails from room service.

Fireflies are disappearing due to pharmaceutical harvesting, light pollution, and habitat destruction. If there is a field or area where fireflies live and it gets destroyed or paved, lightening bugs don’t migrate, they just disappear – poof! – forever.

Which is sad. Because how will we know it’s summer?

Love, Mom

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This Language of Ours, Caffeine, Meteors, Spiders, and Cement

what does green meanDear Kid,

The English Language. It may not be perfect (ever think about the way the word “cough” is spelled?), it may be a little confusing (your, you’re, ur), but it’s ours.

Oh, English, English, English.

In a new comic,  Maria Scrivan shows four words that have taken on new meaning. The first is green which at one time referred to the color and now means environmentally friendly. I’ll leave it to you to click through to see the rest (my prediction is you’ll like the fourth one the best—let me know).

In other news, today is unofficially Take Your Gun to Starbucks Day. I kid you not. Go elsewhere for caffeine.

We didn’t watch the Persied Meteor Shower this weekend (at least this part of the ‘we’ didn’t—can’t swear that no one got up to view it). As expected, the inconvenient time (when will Mother Nature learn to check our schedules before planning a big event?) and the jam packed weekend meant we were more interested in the inside of our eyelids than the outside of the heavens. I have it on great authority that if you were somewhere without cloud cover (and you were looking in the right place), it was quite a glorious site. If you are so inclined, there are several more crazy early morning watchings available.

We also didn’t build a retaining wall this weekend. Turns out that Dad and I had a misunderstanding of what the wall was supposed to do. When he understood what I thought he meant (follow that?), he clarified. When I understood what he meant, I vetoed. No wall right now. But he and Pi did an excellent job pouring cement around the sewer drain to try to put a stop to the erosion problem. Even without a Blue Ox, Paul Bunyan did a Most Excellent Job of starting the planting bed for the Great Iris Expansion.

We did a fair amount of weeding yesterday. Booker spent most of the time basking in the sun. Note to self: Teach puppy to identify weeds and dig them up. Response to note to self: Ha!

countdown to move inThere is an upside-down glass on the floor in our kitchen. This—as you well know—is the international signal for There Is A Bug Trapped Here That We Intend To Release Into The Wild But Has A 50/50 Chance of Dying Before We Get Around To It. Remember the saying in Animal Farm: Four legs good, two legs better? My version is: Four legs good, more legs outside. As in, Wildlife Belongs In the Wild Not In My Kitchen. Booker was no help at all. When the spider went scurrying across the floor he stared at me hopefully. I’m guessing the hopeful was for food and not permission to play with the spider since I was shrieking “Where is the spider??? Booker, get the spider!!!!” at the time.

Hope your (not you’re or ur) day is filled with the appropriate number of legs.

Love, Mom

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