Friday, August 19, 2011

Mosquitoes have been rare this dryish Autumn.  Maybe they are around, but harried by the bats, swifts, dragonflies, swallows, robber flies and so on that dive and zig through the airspace.  And then there are the frogs, toads and snakes that hunt in the grass.  

It is grasshoppers, katydids and their kin seem to be ascendant at the moment.  I saw the garden spider among the herbs binding a good-sized brown one, but that can't put a dent in the population - (nor will the blister beetles at least for now) - and besides I think the wasps have been thinning out the spiders.  A few years ago I found coyote scat in the yard and it was entirely the casings of grasshoppers.  I hear the coyotes in the night, and something has been making off with the mouse carcasses we toss out, so maybe they are visiting and gorging themselves again.  For now, every stride in the yard is a splash of fleeing hoppers.

She feasts on a large, leaf-shaped katydid
We could eat them ourselves I know, but I'm not going to.  It's a very human thing to carve out a category, "food" from within the larger category of edible things - and until I'm a great deal hungrier than I am now, insects aren't food.  When we get chickens they can eat bugs and transform them into eggs for us.