I am kind of a bug nerd. Have always been, but being up here means exposure to some pretty snazzy insects. Yesterday we hunted down The Great Tomato Horn Worm which is the caterpillar precursor of hawk moths, and also possesses an impressive array of defense mechanisms:
1) Firstly, they are green and camouflage very well with the plant, and are therefore difficult to find.
2) If you shake a plant on which they are presiding/consuming, they will warn you with clicking noises.
3) They have very good grip and a decent number of legs. Prying them off a tomato stem is not for the easily-deterred.
4) When you do manage to pry one off, it will either try to bite you with its mouth or stab you with the little dark horn on its butt.
5) Or flail one end from side to side so you can't grab hold as easily.
6) And if all else fails, it will try to puke green juice on you.
Chickens love them.
2 weeks ago