Thursday, June 21, 2012

Oh, now THAT is different.

It may not have been a new plant to try but it sure is different.

Something I certainly have never seen before anyway.

Have you seen this before?
photo property of UF

It is shiny and teeny tiny. I thought it was a little ring of eggs and went to squish it with my finger... and it FLEW OFF!

I guess this little guy (Gal?) is known as a gold bug and is actually pretty rare. At least around here. Well, I certainly had never encountered a beauty like this. Turns out that the shimmery gold tone can change almost instantly to look just like a lady beetle if s/he is frightened. Mimicking a ladybug is a good thing I suppose. A gardener wouldn't want to lose pest defense, and other bugs avoid them after all.

I couldn't find much other information about the bug though. That is to say besides it's main diet. It likes morning glory vines. I do remember mentioning yesterday that the morning glory and the sweet potato were closely related. Can you guess where I found this bug?

Yup. The underside of a sweet potato leaf. Turns out it is a scarab. It's name is the Golden Tortoise Beetle. Big name for a beetle that when full grown is smaller than a ladybug. I know it certainly caught my eye and I'll be ont he look out for more now. They aren't supposed to be a nuisance due to not being in great numbers. I hope that holds true because it would be hard to kill something that pretty. I do hope to see another and if I do I believe I'll try to capture it. I could spare a few leaves for my children to observe him/her for a few days. I think this is one science lesson that needs taught hands on!

Sure hope it flies back. But, I don't hope it has a mate...

'Till next time!



  1. Very cool. You have great eyes to be able to spot tha!

  2. Cool little bug. I'll be looking at my Morning Glory leaves more closely now. They grow wild and volunteer by our front porch, after we planted them there years ago...

    Stay dry!