I was all set to do a quick post about....
...this red-tailed hawk I saw at Lake Isabella...
...and this rather vivid wall at a program yesterday....(Wow. That's...really....something...anyone feel like KABOOMING?)
But a quick romp in the back yard with the dogs led me to this...really fantastic bug.
A wheel bug, to be exact.
I first learned about these really cool bugs from Nina's blog. I always wanted to find one in our yard, because it seems that whatever she has in her yard, we have in ours. I was starting to take it personally that we didn't have any wheel bugs.
And halleluia, we do.
They are so BIG. I thought it was a leaf.
And it was devouring a yellow jacket. Yeeeeeee-eeessss.
I was completely enthralled with it. It's one of the good guys...taking care of Japanese beetles and other pests. I was nearly nose to nose with the thing, and then I had the thought, "Hmm. Do they fly?" Getting the mental image of me running like a mad woman, screaming and tearing off my shirt as I bolt across the yard made me take a few steps back.
Then I noticed a smell. Hmmm....did I step in dog poo or is this bug annoyed with me?
Researching them, I learned that they have two scent-sacs that it everts from its anus when annoyed. Oh boy.
Totally click on the pictures. It's really a beautiful bug.