Oh, and Badfish? They ARE real!

Met a young cousin of yours recently and decided to do one of those “proof of life” photo shoots with him.

IMG_6241

IMG_6256

teenage bug (Extatosoma Tiaratum)

IMG_6243

Adult female Giant Spiny Australian Leaf Bug

Then Baby Badfish asked if his girlfriend could join us. I of course, said YES, curious and all. Who do these Badfish boys date anyway??

IMG_6252IMG_6250

I think she’s pretty cute, if a bit tipsy.

And a funny thing happened during our photo session. I turned my back…for just a second and look what happened!

IMG_6245

From out of nowhere! This one just showed up! Can’t tell if she is a bug girlfriend herself or if she is lunch for my hungry bug. (Just kidding. They are definitely herbivores!)

IMG_6249

Anyway, for real, they are REAL!

Warning: Cuteness Overload

 

Well, it all started early last June…..

1) This guy starts visiting regularly and riling up Phineas and Zorro (our indoor Cat Bosses).

IMG_2363

We think this is an “Evil Wild Tomcat”, just stirring up trouble.

 

2) Then James has a big surprise. He sees movement under the wood pile, just beyond where we sit on our porch swing to look out over the valley. He literally drags me dripping out of my shower to come and see!!

IMG_1938

It’s a close call but, after a while, I convince him to put this baby back where he got it as it is WAY too little for humans to mess with.
 

3) Then later that day I see a different but regular visitor in our yard and she is glowing so I have to take her picture.

IMG_1920

(Can you see why she is “glowing”?)

 
4) James, uninterested in my Mama Deer, has stationed himself by the woodpile, you know, just in case….

IMG_1944

 

 

5) And sure enough, look who he finds!!!!

IMG_1962

UH OH!!

We already have two “very bad cats” (aren’t they all?)

So I am screaming, “NO, no! For god’s sake, don’t FEED them!”

IMG_1963

I had a hard time getting James to put them back. I’m afraid we may have several new residents if I don’t watch him (James) closely!

 
6) Speaking of watching closely, apparently “Evil Tom” is actually “Protective MOM!” Here she is guarding the woodpile.

IMG_1949

 

 

7) And as if this was not enough “cute” for one day…as we arrived home from a quick trip to town, look who we nearly ran into!!!

IMG_1987

She is still licking them off.

IMG_1988                                                  First suckle.

We watched as she led them off into the woods for safety, and no doubt, a rest.

IMG_1993

She’s not so Robust/rotund anymore, is she?

 

 

8) Had enough Cuteness for one day??? Not so fast! We get home and have to check on our 3 new little “guest” kittens, right? And guess what!!!

IMG_2006

We discover this white one!

Now THERE ARE FOUR!!!  So far, anyway……..

I’m exhausted from delight!

As Paul Harvey would always say “And now, the rest of the story.”

Any guesses as to which one we kept??

We eventually found homes for 3 of them, with folks who were committed to socializing these terrified kittens, but this little tough one, the smallest, would just not leave us alone. She would bound out to see us even as her siblings would scatter and hide.

 

IMG_2317
Meet Lucy, named by my grandsons who wanted her to have a strong (super hero) girl name. The movie Lucy had just been released and though they were not allowed to see it, they got the idea from the previews.

 

(parts of this story were published previously in Pacific Northwest Green Friends Newsletter)


Next Chapter:

Lucy’s Story

Like holding air in your hand….

Weight(less)IMG_6026

This is one of my bugs, (Extatosoma tiaratum). She is about 1/3 of the way through her life. She will more than double in size, and then I will be able to feel her weight, barely. In this photo, but for the faint tickle of her claws on my skin, she is completely weightless. I can’t feel her.

 

IMG_5305

I watched this little one for a hours one day and couldn’t tell if she was scruffy old and ready to go, or young and still shedding baby fluff.

The next day, I found her dead on the ground under the feeder. When I picked her up, she seemed to weigh even less than my full grown Bugs. I still could not guess her age.