Thursday, May 29, 2008

Skywatch Friday: Gypsy Sky



A Gypsy Moth Caterpillar hangs from a branch by a silk thread

While the caterpillars are still small, their fastest mode of travel is to hang from a branch suspended by a fine silk thread and wait for the wind to carry it away.


My previous post garnered some very nice comments and raised some very good questions.

Jack and Joann asked if we have Japanese beetles. Yes, they do create a problem with ornamentals and grapes but no significant damage is done to other indigenous species.

Abe raised the question as to whether man had something to do with the problem. Yes, the Gypsy Moth is an alien invasive species brought to the east coast by a profit seeking businessman in the 1800’s. The only profit to be made from them is by those involved in making, distributing, and spraying pesticides. Since they have no significant natural enemies outbreaks are extremely damaging, particularly to our native oaks.

Fishing Guy mentioned that he hopes the spray doesn’t hurt the birds. The insecticide of choice is Bacillus thuringiensis or BT for short. BT is a bacterium that is fatal to caterpillars. No effect has been documented on any bird, fish, or animal species.
For more Sky Watch, vist Tom at Wiggers World

27 comments:

George Townboy said...

Excellent shot!! Love it.

Abraham Lincoln said...

Thanks for the explanation about this pest. I had some inkling that it was man who made the problem and the rest of us will have to clean it up. It is almost always this way. Nature, left alone, pretty much takes care of itself and does a fine job.

I am glad to see the beast against a blue sky.

SandyCarlson said...

I am amazed by what these humble critters can do!

Michele (Rocky Mtn.Girl) said...

Good information and a different take on the Sky Watch this week, I like it...
The Rocky Mountain Retreat

Teresa said...

That doesn't even look real! Very cool!

Pat - An Arkansas Stamper said...

Excellent and interesting photo and a very educational narrative. Thanks.

Ida said...

Great capture!
Very good! :)

Anne-Berit said...

Beautiful and lucky shot!

babooshka said...

Interesting post, and very perculiar skywatch shot

imac said...

This is fantastic shot Salty.


Pop over to see my water features.

quinttarantino said...

A most peculiar SKY WATCH!

Suzanne said...

Interesting perspective. Enjoyable.

Melli said...

I LOVE this shot! Every little hair on his body shows!

DeeMom said...

Super shot and Wonderful information

chrome3d said...

Mysterious pic, informative story. Very good and interesting, thanks!

Chad Oneil Myers said...

Very cool.

Debbie in NC said...

I was thinking..how did she do this? Just throw him in the air and shoot! :)

Wonderful narrative with great photo...thank you!

Old Wom Tigley said...

Sorry I missed yesterdays post Salty.. both very interesting and both great Sky Watch pictures.. Sky Watch can be put to one side when an out break like this is to be mentioned.
Neat post.
Tom

fishing guy said...

Salty: What a cute picture of the catterpillar.
Thanks for answering my question.

photowannabe said...

Outstanding photo. I didn't know that was how they got from one place to another. Very interesting information. Always a pleasure to visit your blog.

WillThink4Wine said...

How marvelous! It's my first time on your blog. Your bird shots are wonderful. It's something I've been working on here at the Swamp in southern Georgia. I haven't been nearly as successful as you!

Petunia said...

Nice one:)


Petunia's SWF

Daniel J Santos said...

excellent, well done.

Stacey Huston said...

Salty, wonderful, and educational as always.. thanks so much for sharing

Jack and Joann said...

Salty, thanks for answering all our questions and for showing us the caterpillar in gymnastics class.

John said...

Great capture! Well done.

i beati said...

That's a shot to sell !!!sandy