Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Interesting find.

Every spring we are surprised by interesting finds. Just when we think we've seen it all, we spot a new bird or a new bug or a new wildflower sprouts in the middle of the yard.

This is one of my favorite things about nature, every thing is constantly changing and surprising us. There are always the expected things, like crocus and daffodils blooming...but also the anticipation of those unexpected treasures. A chance for us all to learn or witness something totally new. For the past several years i have tried to document all of our finds on an online Nature Journal. This is something we really enjoy each year. i suppose it is time to start this years, i'm feeling a bit behind on it.

So this is one on those unexpected treasures, truly a bit of a mystery. We found it laying in the driveway, probably scratched up by the chickens or maybe dug up when we tilled the new garden beds. It is quite obviously the pupa of some sort of moth or bug, but it was much larger than any we had seen before.

It measured over 2 1/8 inches long. After doing a bit of online research (googling giant cocoons/pupas) and then eventually just looking it up at the What's that Bug website (one of our favorites!) We have identified this as a Saturniid Moth Pupa, probably a Regal Moth. i'm not sure if it will emerge having been dug up and spent the night uncovered during below freezing temps. We placed it in a flowerpot with some soil and covered it loosly with dead leaves and other decaying matter. Perhaps it will surprise us.


Stephanie said...

Holy Moley!!
:) That thing is HUGE!

Yay for figuring out what it is.

Andrea said...

Wow! Thats interesting :O)