Princess and I both love flowers and working in the garden, which I seem to have inherited from my own mom. My mom told me about a great opportunity for us to start getting our hands in the dirt earlier than usual. R & R Greenhouse and Gardens near Limerick, Saskatchwan offers workshops where you can go and get an early start on your spring gardening! Princess and I signed up for the Plant Your Own Hanging Baskets workshop and went to play in the dirt :)
But before we got our tour, we were distracted by this little guy that we found on the driveway.
The Isabella Tiger Moth (Pyrrharctia isabella) can be found in many cold regions, including the Arctic. The banded Woolly Bear larva emerges from the egg in the fall and overwinters in its caterpillar form, when it literally freezes solid. It survives being frozen by producing a cryoprotectant in its tissues. In the spring it thaws out and emerges to pupate. Once it emerges from its pupa as a moth it has only days to find a mate.
In most temperate climates, caterpillars become moths within months of hatching, but in the Arctic the summer period for vegetative growth – and hence feeding – is so short that the Woolly Bear must feed for several summers, freezing again each winter before finally pupating. Some are known to live through as many as 14 winters.
Have you taken your child(ren) on a date or field trip lately? What did you learn?
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