Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Green Dumpster Diving

The boys and I were out walking the neighborhood. We picked up some broccoli from Figueroa Produce and turned ourselves homeward. It was trash day. Green, blue and black bins shared the sidewalk with us. As I passed one full green bin, a bright red bug caught my eye. My oldest son and I recognized the bug as ladybug larva. Our identification skills were honed in March when we raised and watched some ladybugs grow.

Excited about our discovery, I noticed the entire green bin was crawling with ladybug larvae. We harvested seven and brought them back to Camp Ramshackle. My oldest son bore the task of keeping the lively critters on the stroller tray with gentle pokes and sweet words of direction.

As we worked our way home, we periodically took roll on the bug count. "Only three left, Mom," by the time we pulled up to the Ramshackle gate. But I spotted one on my son's back and another on his knee. Five larvae were transported to barrel of carrots in dire need of some aphid eating ladybugs.

We returned to the stroller, happy to find a rouge to add to the posse.

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