Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Out of the woods?

The death toll is now at 43. However I think it's slowing down, since there were only 2 dead worms this evening compared to the ten I disposed of this morning. Between feeding, cleaning, and disinfecting I've been spending a lot of time in my bug room. It's now a very crowded room because I have Colony A split between three containers, and Colonies B and C split into two. I never thought I would have this many bugs, and also never suspected that the room would be too small. As it is I still have enough room, but it's getting pretty tight in there.

But the bugs seem happy and are staying alive, so I think we're on the upswing.

In other news, I've found two other species of caterpillars that I let go in my back yard, in addition to three praying mantids. The mantids are very young nymphs that hitched a ride on the oak leaves and they are adorable. I haven't had a chance to identify the caterpillars. In any case, they are all hopefully doing well outside. I didn't keep the mantids for fear that they wouldn't get enough to eat, even though I saw small leafhoppers and some spiders in with my oak leaves. Had my worms been smaller I'd have worried that they'd eat the worms, but the worms are at least 20 times bigger than the mantids that I found so I wasn't worried. I might have to raise some of them on down the road because they are so damn cool.

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