Thursday, August 03, 2006

Mystery bug identity revealed!

It's a robber fly! Thanks, Anonymous commenter (Mary I'm pretty sure) and thanks to your Bob too.

Everything you ever wanted to know about robber flies is here.

Insects are so cool. Back when I worked in New York, we knew people who spent their lives studying ants or wasps. There were lots of jokes about the wasp guys, but for some reason nobody ever mocked the ant people.

Even I, who obliterates ants with a genocidal fury, have spent more time than I care to acknowledge watching their aimless progress across the kitchen floor and wondering just what the fuck? There's obviously a lot more going on there than meets the eye. I imagine it is in this spirit that our old friend Barrett Klein has been busy depriving wasps of sleep in recent years.

I try not to prod the kids too much, but I am always on the lookout for situations that encourage their curiosity and prompt them to develop their observation skills. I feel pretty strongly that I've only ever learned anything by looking.

Big Man looking at a skipper
Originally uploaded by pwilnyc.