Thursday, May 24, 2012

My Own Private Assassin

The other day I was admiring my agapanthus and spied an orange, creepy-crawly thing on the petals. Armed with my camera I snapped off several images. Once enlarged on my computer I was able to see in greater detail, and with the help of Google, bingo! I had an ID.

For those of you unaware, let me introduce you to the Milkweed Assassin Bug. It is a beneficial insect to have in the garden since they prey on pests that eat your plants, such as caterpillars and aphids. I have always been a fan of natural pest control, and this little army will keep my flowers looking pristine. Instead of getting creeped out, I now view them in a completely positive way.

 Without further adieu, meet my private army of assassins:


Peekaboo! I see you!!






Hopefully they'll keep reproducing! I now have a 2nd generation in place, ready to go. :)
They can deliver a painful sting to humans if handled in such a way that makes them feel threatened. Please handle at your own risk.

EDIT 10:00am: I got called back for a SECOND interview!!!

Sharing with A Rural Journal, Thursday Blog Hop.


34 comments:

bailey-road.com said...

These are fantastic captures, Gail!

Deanna said...

I want me some Assassin Bugs, not only are they right photogenic but they keep the garden clean of pests. Beautiful captures!!

Evelyn S. said...

Absolutely fascinating!!! What a colorful creature that is...and babies, too??? Fabulous photography, Gail. I love the contrast of the "assassin" against the soft purple!

Starla said...

I like the "baby" army marching!!

Congrats on the second interview!!

TexWisGirl said...

what a cool beauty! we could use several thousand of these as we're being overrun w/ grasshoppers here!

Rosemary Aubut said...

Wow incredible shots Gail! Flowers look beautiful too! Nice contrast with the color of the assassin!

Tricia said...

Wow! Those are some nice shots, Gail. I'm all for natural pest control too. We just put some beneficial nematodes on our lawn to try and get rid of some of the grubs and then, hopefully, the moles.

hootnonny said...

Never heard of them and they do look menancing. There's a moral to that story!

Congrats on your second interview. I told Mo about the number of resumes the CEO threw out because of poor spelling (a Nonnie lesson.) He said that's why he types! Guess those folks don't know how to use spell check!

Knock 'em dead!

ladyfi said...

Hurray you for the second interview!

Love love these shots.

Cynthia Schelzig said...

What a beautiful creature and you captured them so wonderfully!!
Nature at it´s best!

Hula Girl at Heart said...

That second photo is just fabulous. Love it, love it, love it!

lisa. said...

Yeeeeeeeessssss, on the second interview Gail! Fingers crossed for you.

This is quite a name for such a little bug. sure glad it is something helpful, because there are quite a few of them in the 2nd generation! :-)

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

They have quite a name. Odd looking bug!

Congrats on your 2nd interview, good luck!

Autumn said...

Stunning macros! Those are cool bugs. You captured them so beautifully!

Tricia @ Bluff Area Daily said...

2nd interview? YaY! Very cool & a great big congratulations!

I don't know how you was able to see that lil army, but excellent shot, they all are! I love the brightness of these shots w/o anything being blown out... I can't seem to get that w/ my lil rinky-dink camera! LoL!

Tricia @ Bluff Area Daily said...

ps love the peek-a-boo shot! heheheee =)

Barbara said...

Oh, how cool! I love how it pops against the blue. And congrats on the interview!! Smart company after all!!

Kathy said...

Are you sure these buggers don't bite?

Take a different purse this time!

missing moments said...

I need me some of those bugs! Great photos!

Francisca said...

Delightful captures of your private army of assassins, Gail.

Laura Delegal - Leroy Photography said...

Congrats on the second interview! Just said a quick prayer that you would get it (if that's where God wants you to be). Now on to the bug. I've seen and photographed them before, but never knew what they were. Excellent. Now I know. Have a great weekend.

Butterbean Row said...

Gail,
Please send me some of your bugs. I sure could use them here. LOL
Thanks for the bug lesson. They are cool.

♥charlotte

Ruth said...

Very interesting, and wonderful macro's, well done on getting that interview, hope all goes your way :)

tinajo said...

Wow, those are scary and cool at the same time! Don't think I've ever seen anything like it here in Sweden..! :-)

Nancy said...

How cool! Love the bugs that take care of our flowers and plants! :)

Crack You Whip said...

I've learned something new today, but I am simply amazed at the beautiful shots of them...especially the babies!

Linda R said...

Oh my goodness. Are those the coolest looking bugs or what. I don't think we have those here in the desert!

YEA!! You got the second interviews. So happy for you.

Hugs~

Shug said...

I don't think I have ever seen this kind of BUG...You really did do a great job, capturing all the cute little moves of these fellas. Most people would pull out the spray and start shooting at em...glad you researched and found that they are good to have around.
Hope all goes well with that interview...
hugs..

Tina said...

Thanks for the info on these bugs Gail. They look similar to bugs I've seen on my moms garden plants.
Your images are beautiful, love that pale purple and soft green and the bug detail is wonderful!

beth said...

what fun and fantastically shot bugs :)

shirley said...

Wow, these are great captures - I feel somewhat "safer" knowing there's an assassin bug out there, but boy, it looks scary!
Have a great week!

Pieces of Sunshine said...

Yahoo! a second interview, sounding more hopeful! Guess you made sure you didn't leave your purse behind in the room this time.

Those bugs are amazing. I've had some similar in my yard but a different colour.

Kittie Howard said...

Would love a few of these beauties in my garden. Love your "NatGeo" photos, Gail.

septembermom said...

You know what else I love about your blog? I learn alot! Thanks!