Friday, 8 August 2014

It's An Ambush!

Several years ago I was at first perplexed when I noticed that a honey bee that was on a flower was not moving -- at all. Then I noticed that a little creature had it grappled underneath by two front legs that were reminiscent of a praying mantis. The unfortunate bee had become a meal for an ambush bug (Phymata). Since then I've seen a lot of these little predators, especially on goldenrod at this time of year. Cleverly disguised, they wait in ambush on a nectar source and can capture victims several times their size. Hey, we all have to make a living, right?

Goldenrod plants are now offering a feast of nectar and pollen.

Disguised as debris, an ambush bug awaits a pollinator victim.

Looking a bit like a science fiction alien.

Nice mimic on the goldenrod colour in it's break-up pattern.

Check out those grappling hooks!

Not everyone will make it safely home tonight.

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