Training Class Update: Fun with Bugs

by Carolyn Henderson

The El Camino Real Texas Master Naturalist training class was treated to a great program about bugs by Wizzie Brown, entomologist for TAMU AgriLife Extension in Travis County. Even the long-time members learned many new facts about Texas bugs. Ms. Brown’s favorite bug is a roach. That happens to be my least favorite. I’ve attached the ways to connect with her.

The Travis County AgriLife Extension office does blogs, programs, and YouTube posts about all things Texas nature. Many of these will give you AT hours while enthralling your interest in nature. If you email Ms. Brown, you can get on the email list that gets everyone notified of what is available. Kathy Lester, student trainer, emailed all the PowerPoint screens to everyone. The talk was even more informative. 

Meeting in progress

At our regular meeting, March 9, Debbi Harris will teach us how to compost with worms. 

Lady Bugs are Here

by Donna Lewis

The Lady Bugs are HERE!!!  How wonderful.

I tried to stay outside today for a while, but the annoying little darlings we call Ladybugs were everywhere.  In my hair , down my coveralls, and on my precious little dogs.

I am sure all of you are having fun with them also. They are actually Asian beetles that originated in China, Japan , Korea, and Russia. They come in many colors and have different numbers of dots on them.

The yellow house and its bugs.

To make it even more interesting the U.S. Department of Agriculture brought them to the US to aid the farmers control of aphids and scale insects. This was done mostly to help out the pecan and apple farmers. I hope they are happy.

The rest of us have to deal with them in our houses and everywhere. They apparently really like light colors, white and yellow. Guess what color my house is??

Right now, I cannot go outside without a dozen coming into the house. Their only defense is a yellow foul-smelling fluid that shoots off their legs. Colorful, tricky, and icky.

The best way to collect them from your house or porch is to use the wet/dry vacuum. Then you take them elsewhere and let them go. I am sure most of you will do something else.  Don’t tell me.

Cold weather will settle them down. Help is coming. Just go outside.