Delightful Insects of Summer

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Summer is here, so the insects can't be far behind. You might think of houseflies, ants, ticks, and the dreaded mosquito, but let's leave those subjects for another time. There are some really fascinating and (dare I say it?) nice bugs we can enjoy in the summer.

Honeybees

A honeybee will sting you if you step on one barefoot, but we couldn't get along without them. Honeybees traipse from flower to flower, ensuring that our food crops are pollinated. Pollination is a fortunate side effect; what the bees are after is sweet nectar, which they concentrate and covert to honey. And there are few things better on a hot fresh biscuit!

Fireflies
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According to The Firefly Files, fireflies produce light "via a chemical reaction consisting of Luciferin (a substrate) combined with Luciferase (an enzyme), ATP (adenosine triphosphate) and oxygen." Personally, I just love to watch them blink on and off in the distance as I enjoy a late night campfire with friends.

More delightful bugs, after the jump.

Butterflies
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There are 24,000 different species of butterflies, each more beautiful than the last. People plan entire gardens around the plants' ability to attract butterflies.

Luna Moths
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Luna moths only live about a week as adults, so if you see one, consider it a rare treat. They are more likely to come out at night, so watch for them by the light of the moon.

Ladybugs
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A single ladybug can eat 5,000 other insects in its lifetime, which makes them the perfect addition to a garden. And they're cute, too.

Praying Mantis
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Praying mantids tend to have a gruesome sex life, but that's their business. Seeing one can startle you, since they blend in so well with their plant habitat. Praying mantids eat other insects, which can be beneficial in a garden unless they eat other beneficial insects, such as ladybugs. For an insect, they make fairly good pets, and can live up to three years in captivity.

Do you have any to add to this list?

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May 29, 2007 - 1:59am
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