Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Tuesday Flutterby: a Mourning Cloak for BugGirl

Portrait of a Mourning Cloak Nymphalis antiopa (Linnaeus, 1758)
The Home Bug Garden sputtered to a start on Monday 13 April 2009 for a number of reasons, mostly omphaloskeptic, but also with some inspiration from my friend Adrian who had a host of blogs and, in particular, his now defunct Gardening Zone 3b. I originally wanted to call my blog "Bug Gardeners for Bush", but Adrian convinced me that any point I might be trying to make was now moot (and definitely strange). So, I settled for a name that, if not deluded with hope and change, was at least to the point and I've tried to maintain a skeptical but positive view of the value of bugs in the home garden ever since. 
My least crappy picture of a Mourning Cloak
Preaching to one's belly button about the wonders of insect life in the garden is not that easy, especially when you discover a bit of lint in the form of prized plants turning into bugs, but it hasn't been just navel-gazing that has kept me going. It seems I share a love of insects with a large community of bloggers, many of whom are listed in the sidebar For the Bugs. Foremost among those in their influence on me have been Myrmecos and BugGirl, sort of the alpha and omega of bug blog nerdery. Even though I still don't have a decent picture of a Mourning Cloak Butterfly, thanks to the inspiration of Myrmecos' unfailingly fine images, Thrify Thursday, and the Compound Eye I sometimes take a point-and-shoot that is more than just a poor record of a bug. Thanks to BugGirl, I rarely rant, for who wants to be a second-class bug-ranter?
Mourning Cloak chrysalis - not art, but slightly more than a record
I still remember the day I first stumbled across BugGirl's Blog - a wonderful rant about green potatoes. Not just an entertaining rant, but chock-full of good information and with bug poop for dessert. I've been back several times a week ever since. Alas, after 8 years of developing probably the best known of all bug blogs, BugGirl has now gone into diapause. Bugger! Where am I going to go for bug-rants now? Well, at least diapause is a pause and not necessarily an ending. Sometimes even crap can be an element of a successful diapause. So, I'll end on a hopeful note and an image that, while it would probably make Myrmecos shudder, BugGirl might enjoy: a Mourning Cloak taking what comes along and using it with every intention of surviving until next spring.
This picture sucks as an image (but has some good natural history information)

1 comment:

  1. What a touching tribute to BugGirl! I hope she appreciates the effort you put into the photographs, especially the last one.

    Of course, the bug-ranting field is now open, so why not let the Home Bug Garden fill the gap?