what the… ?

So what’s green, 5″ long and currently eating the heck out of one of my datura plants?

hawkmoth larva on a datura leaf



















It’s the larva of a Night-Flying Hawkmoth! Yeah, I’ve seen these guys before, which is why I’m not killing it. It grows into a moth as big as a hummingbird! Better yet, at a glance it even looks like a hummingbird because it has a long “proboscis” that it sticks into the trumped-shaped datura flowers to pollinate them — check it out. So cool.

If you have tomatoes, you may have seen the larva before — it’s also known as the infamous tomato hornworm. I found one in our veggie garden last year but a braconid wasp laid its eggs on its back, just like the photo below. When the wasps hatched they finished it off. Ewwwwwwwwwwww. What a way to go. Don’t you wish there was a short video about the whole gory process?

tomato hornworm with wasp eggs | http://www.vegedge.umn.edu

tomato hornworm with wasp eggs | www.vegedge.umn.edu













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2 Responses to “what the… ?”

  1. Jennifer says:

    perhaps the tomato hornworm has eaten this blog writer?

  2. Brook says:

    devoured by summer and preparation for first grade, not worms! Bix’s first full day was today… back to bidness.

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