Friday, October 16, 2009

A little insect humor

Hope you enjoy this recent email conversation between me and some of our entomologists.

David Goforth
Client reports her son finding a white grasshopper. I don’t guess I have ever seen a white grasshopper but maybe I haven’t been looking. Maybe when they first molt they are white and I have never been there at the right time. Do you think a white grasshopper is rare and do you have any desire to own it? Thanks.

Specialist #1
I think you guessed right about the new molt. Next time you find a grasshopper nymph, keep your eyes on it and follow it around day and night for a week or two until it molts.

Specialist #2
That sounds about right. This is how references to white elephants got started -- you have to be there when it molts to see it, but who wants to follow an elephant around for weeks or months waiting for that to happen? All that time and expense. Been there, dung that.
David Goforth
Thanks. I have never even seen pictures of a cast elephant skin. They must not last long in nature.

Specialist #2
Didn't you ever wonder where suede came from?

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