Sunday, September 09, 2007

Insects and Invertabrates of NC

Before we begin: Let me warn those of weak constitutions. There are macro shots of insects. (2) Proceed with caution.
I thought I would highlight some recent findings in Charlotte. Incidentally, I enjoy the fact that residents of this city are called Charlottens. Say it aloud- it's got a nice respectable ring to it, eh?
Yesterday marked the occasion of my first visit to :
The City Dump!
Timm was surprised that I had never been to a dump. Why would I have occasion to frequent the dump? Most 'girls' my age don't spend their free time...dumping. But when Michelle was also surprised at my inaugural dump trip, I reconsidered. (We went to dump some construction stuff for those of you like Diana who are probably wonder why on earth one would choose to go to the dump. I'll bet money Diana's never been to a dump either.)
The dump was pleasantly surprising and a disappointment both. It was pleasantly surprising because it was just one smallish contained mound of trash. There were no teeming insects, fetid odors, or Bulldozers moving waste from one end of the expanse to another.
It was disappointing for the very same reasons. I imagined a Hollywood style dump, with feet upon feet of waste for as fall as the eye could see. I imagined car crushers turning out cubes of trash, with an enormous pit in the earth where they would bury the waste. I saw drifts of trash with dips and swells across the horizon with an audible buzzing of flies, and a putrid stench. And where was the really grody stuff? It was just construction materials, windows, and old furniture and the like. I was jipped on the dump experience. I wasn't missing anything,
All of this did not stop me from 'shopping' the garbage, trying to salvage furniture and asking Timm to climb up just a little ways for what looked like a cool window.He declined.
This is what I found on the porch after being alerted by Timm that there was an Anaconda out there. Yes, indeedy- that is a slug folks. Very bad blurry picture as it was dark out and I was not going to relocate the slug for better lighting- but check out the size of that thing! Obviously I was fascinated.
And now- a series on Cicadas. Delightful insects in these parts that create a rhythmic chirping that serves as the soundtrack to Summer and sticky humid whether. This perfectly intact Cicada exoskeleton was on our deck. Lucky me! I picked it up with a stick and photographed it. It's huge! That's my pinky next to it for scale. Check out the site Cicadamania.com. They have songs.


These are some sights from my backyard to give vision to where we are. This is a frequent scene on the deck-various colors of spray paint aligned on the rail. It seems I spray paint something every day. More to come.
This is our backyard as seen from our deck. I really like it and I have dreams and plans for it. But I don't know what they are yet.
The view of my neighbors houses from the deck.
I don't know what this thing is called. While I can see it would be very useful in shielding you from the bugs in the hot summer months, I prefer to stay indoors when the threat of insects looms so large I need a sheet of netting to protect myself. This said, I want to take it down. I would even list it on Craig's List since I've seen numerous bug huts in other yards. Someone would buy it. But I need to know what it is before I can determine the potential value to someone in search of insect protection.

So as you can tell I was out on the deck to take the cicada picture, so I kind of went to town. Please excuse the boring deck-scapes-But like I said, just giving vision to the adventure out here in the South.
Stay tuned for the following installments coming soon:

Thrift Store and Antique Finds- 25 cents and up!
Spraypaint: Your ticket to revitalizing and repurposing your old junk.
Updates on Decor Progress.
Review of my ward and potential friend candidates.
The object of my latest obsession.
Owls.

7 comments:

charlotte said...

I've never been to the dump either--who knew it was such an expected trip of life? I love seeing the pictures of your deck--it looks like things are coming together a little bit more. Those pictures are disgusting but oddly fascinating.

Hannah said...

Your pre-dump thoughts are what mine were, but I went when I was like 12 and have been many a time since then. Glad it wasn't traumatizing :)

I love the insect pictures- so cool that Bella will be able to learn so much hands on! Although I didn't like the sound of the Cicadas at night when I was sleeping, I will agree that they are a total soundtrack to southern nights and I kinda miss it.

You could call your insect hut a "Portable Gazebo".

mom said...

Looking forward to the future posts refered to.....

Only the Nantucket Dump can be the standard for chic dumps! Ask Michelle about that one, or did you go with us? It has a name and a swap-hut! We got some great books there!

I guess Timm is not a true Sneelock if he would not go for the old frame. Dad would shrug and always indulge!

Southern bugs top the list!

Diana said...

You're right you should've bet Timm or something I've never been to the dump nor do I have any desire to ever go to the dump. I was wondering what in the crap is Timm doing near all that garbage when I saw the pic and hadn't read yet. Thank goodness there were no super strong smells and ooziness of gross liquids and such but I can see how you feel like you missed out.
I love the pictures of your backyard it's fun to see it from your perspective adn not the real estate site or google earth!

Kim said...

Unfortunately we are blessed with Cicada during the hot sticky summer months here in Ohio as well. I am absolutely petrified of them. (I actually cried real tears last summer when Jared jokingly chased me around our yard with an empty shell. Yeah, it's that bad...)
Call it an irrational fear..(afterall, they are harmless, clumsey bugs) but until one has experienced a 17-year mass "hatching" and watched first hand as they crawl out of the ground by the thousands, then break out of their shells all white with red, wee-beady eyes... yeah, enough said. I can handle the distant humming but no more pictures please! :)

michelle said...

EW. Kim's comment has tainted cicadas for me now! I think your dump is pretty cool if it has old furniture and windows and such salvage!

Charlottens. Is that pronounced the same as charlatans? Because I can't really imagine another pronunciation, but I also can't imagine a whole city full of people wanting to go by that name...

Jill said...

I have never been to the dump, nor do I have any plans to go.

I'm laughing at your comment about not relocating the slug (aka anaconda) to better lighting.

Those cicadas are freaky huge (I had no idea). They would leave bruises on people if they flew into them or maybe even knock Bella over.

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