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Tuesday, May 11, 2010: Beauty or Beast?

        There is a place for every organism in nature, but there are some I have trouble accepting and appreciating:

*Ticks, especially when they imbed themselves in my skin.

*Leeches, especially when they attach to my skin.

*Cockroaches, when they are scurrying around and I’m required to stay in the vicinity. (I’ve never had them in my own home but have had them in dorm rooms, and work places)

*Tent caterpillars, which have never harmed me but whose webbed tents are so noticeably present in our cherry trees right now.

           Of all these, the tent caterpillars should be the least objectionable. Still, I was horrified and grossed out the first year at our new cabin to see how many trees were affected.  I did enough research to learn that the caterpillars and their tents would disappear as the tree leaves aged and became less edible. The trees would survive. I would not have to spend the summer walking past those gross little webs, thick with little creepies.

            This year I thought if I could find something attractive in the caterpillars, I’d appreciate them more and allow them space without finding their presence so repulsive. It wasn’t like I was planning on ever handling them or inviting them into my home, but I did hope to overcome my revulsion.


            Even after taking these photos, I found myself wanting them gone from our property. I went back on the internet. Bluebirds will eat tent caterpillars. My neighbor has a bluebird house and we have been thinking about putting one up in our clearing. Now I’m convinced. We need a bluebird house and a resident bluebird.

           This part feels a bit unloving and unspiritual. I’m not going to kill the tent caterpillars myself; I’m going to hope a bluebird will kill them. Sigh . . . at least it would be part of a natural cycle.

Posted on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 08:33AM by Registered CommenterThe Skeptical Mystic | Comments1 Comment

Reader Comments (1)

I'm glad to know about the Bluebirds.
May 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKass

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