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Wild Kingdom

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

So I just made a daring foray into the outside world (aka my backyard) to photograph my latest craft project, and check it out: I made a friend!

"'ELLO."

This little guy was on the arm of a cruddy old deck chair I was moving out of the way.

"Come inside! Meet the misses!"

Doesn't he look like a cute little snake? I did a little googling and discovered that's their natural defense mechanism. (Looking like snakes, I mean. Not googling. If they googled as a defense mechanism, I'm pretty sure they'd sound like those annoying Bing commercials.)

Anyhoo, when I first saw the little guy I could have sworn he had antennae. On a hunch, I jiggled the chair... and lookie lookie!

He even has a little forked tongue thingy!

Now that is some dedicated snake cosplay, Mr. C.


And because I know you're curious, here's what he'll look like in his next life:


This is a Spicebush Swallowtail, and it has orange on it. Looks like he picked the right backyard.


This has been Wild Kingdom, with Jen-the-blogger-who-never-leaves-the-house. Tune in next week when a rampaging lady bug blows in through the front door and chaos ensues.

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PS - These are my very first pictures taken on our new camera! It's a Canon 7D with a 28-135 lens, and John was like a kid at Christmas when it arrived in the mail the day before yesterday. (He handles all the camera research and decreed this was the best model for us.) So far, I'm really liking it. In fact, I think I may have finally found an acceptable upgrade for my trusty Canon Rebel XT. Now we'll just see if you guys notice any improvement in my photos. ;)

Posted by Jen at 3:40 PM Labels: , , ,

39 comments:

  1. Eeeee! What a delightful friend! I love animals that are cute in a non-traditional fashion. Everyone expects puppies to be cute, but no one really thinks "cute" when they think of insects! He'll be one pretty fellow when he transforms!

    Great photos! I love his little antenna so hard...

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  2. i'm sorry, did you say hello?

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  3. Cool! I had to call my daughter over to see, she loves critters. How fun to find something so pretty and interesting in your backyard. He's cute.

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  4. WOW! I can't believe that was in your backyard! I've only seen caterpillars like that on the nature channel and I'm a very outdoorsy person. How cool!

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  5. That's a great camera you have there! Great pictures! My hubby got that camera 2 years ago for his birthday, and he's taken some GREAT pictures with it!

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  6. If she'd 'ave kept on goin' down that way she'd 'ave gone straight to the goblin castle!

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  7. We had the funkiest moth here a couple years ago, the only pic we got was on a cell, so it wasn't very good. It looked like it was wearing its own little ball gown!

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  8. I always wanted to go inside to meet the Mrs. and have a cup of tea. Hands down my favorite line from the movie.

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  9. Oh so cool!! And such beautiful photos! I teach college ecology, and I'm totally going to show my students this cool example of mimicry! thanks for sharing!

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  10. I think that's his bum. :)
    Usually when a Caterpillar has a defensive "face" he keeps it on his backside.

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  11. Have you ever read "A Girl of the Limberlost" by Gene Stratton-Porter? The main character Elnora searches for larvae & caterpillers, & the full grown beauties of butterflies and moths to sell to the Bird Lady. Your pics reminded me of the book.

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  12. Awww Emily just stole what I was gonna say!! Oh well... I am glad you made such a cute little friend anyway

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  13. My first thought after "beautiful bug!" was "hey, this must be a new camera!" either because the quality difference is there (that I am usually oblivious to), or I am used to seeing new camera play... either way, thanks for sharing!

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  14. Haha! I love the idea that he's cosplaying! :)

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  15. Aaaawww, what a cute little fellow!

    I wish someone would sell stuffed toys that look your new friend. I'd totally buy some. Several. Many... :-)

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  16. The forked tongue thingy is actually a very smelly defense mechanism. Beware!

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  17. The orange thing is an osmeterium. It is a defensive organ of swallowtail butterfly larva that secretes defensive chemicals.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osmeterium

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  18. OMGOMGOMG THAT THING IS SO CUTE DO YOU THINK THEY SELL THEM AS PETS??

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  19. Beautiful! And in a nice bit of serendipity, the very next post my reader fed me after EPBOT was this BBC news story about why some insects are better than others at mimicking more dangerous critters.

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  20. Oh my god, that is the cutest thing I've seen this week. I actually thought it was another one of your crafts because it looks so perfect.

    I also agree with whoever it was that said it looks like Caterpie xD

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  21. I get Giant Swallowtail caterpillars that completely lack all the charm of your new friend. First, they munch on my tangerine trees. Second, they look, very accurately, like bird poop. And third, the emit a very foul odor when they extend their ometeria.

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  22. He almost doesn't even look real!

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  23. Nice shots with your new camera. I'm terrified of caterpillars, but your little friend looks cute. As long as he doesn't touch me I'll admire him.:-)

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  24. Jenn,

    I love how you quote the same movies I do. Labyrinth is one of my favorites.

    Maureen

    P.S. It was great to see you in Pittsburgh.

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  25. I am ALSO going to recommend Girl of the Limberlost! I'm a wildlife/outdoors person so it was great for that side of me. Not wildly entertaining for the sci-fi/fantasy side, but a good read nonetheless.

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  26. He is so cute....and I thought of you today when I saw this restaurant on a blog I read. http://eastsideshowroom.com/

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  27. No no no, you got it ALL WRONG...

    "I'm Jen Your-Last-Name-Here. And until next time, enjoy our Wild America."

    I might be dating myself on that one, so hopefully this might spark some memories...

    Wild America clip

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  28. Yay for a new camera! And super YAY for such an awesome one!!! :o) I upgraded from a Rebel Xti to the 7D about 1.5 years ago. It is a fantastic camera. I love it. Have lots of fun with it!

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  29. "dedicated snake cosplay" totally made me laugh.

    And for some reason your WV hates me. Seriously.

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  30. I'm with Marnie. I like seeing your pictures but would likely squeal and run if I saw those things in real life.

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  31. What lovely pictures! I love caterpillars - a while ago we had a Giant Leopard Moth caterpillar hanging around our front porch. I had hoped he would stay around to adulthood, but he ran away before we could see him in all his enormous fluttery splendour (like this one).

    Visho forstome,
    Elinor B

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  32. Darn it, now I want one. A new camera, not a caterpillar friend. :-) Best Buy had a bunch on sale last month but I never got there to check them out. I really need to do some research to figure out which might be the best for me.

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  33. I love this! From your crafts to your insects! lol I showed my hubs the caterpillar, said, "Honey, it's his little face cute!" He says to me, "That's it's butt." Oh, well, either way, cute butt! :) LOL!

    Love your site, will come back again and again!

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  34. ha! we had one of those on our dill plant last summer! ... turns out they eat dill. the plant died. BUT i later rescued it as an adult when it got trapped between our screen door and the glass window and couldn't get out. it was huge. yeah i'm bragging, so what.

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  35. Throw a pokeball!

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  36. Dude! I've always wanted to see one of the super fancy catepillars! I see butterflies in abundance (never get tired of those) and woolly bears and inch worms...but rarely the striking catepillar. Thanks for sharing!

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  37. This was my moth... forgive me if I haven't a clue how to make it in only a word...
    http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/species/Antheraea-polyphemus
    Only it was wet, and it's wings were droopy, it was more pink than brown... I wish I still had the original pic...

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  38. He's even cuter than the bugapillar who turned up on our balcony a couple of years ago:

    Orville Greenenbacher

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