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January, 05 2019

Do You Ootheca?

Tags: Bugs

We have a pretty sweet terrarium in our kitchen at the LoCoFlo Studio. Our friend Irene picked it up on the side of the road a few years ago. It has showcased many wedding dioramas featuring calacas (Mexican skeletons) and has been home to several pupae (totally Kafkaesque - majorly).

This winter, some new tenants moved into the terrarium: The Oothecae (check out the pronunciation). Ootheca are egg cases where baby praying mantises gestate.

These nut-like cocoons frequently hitch a ride on evergreen branches that come into the shop - especially arborvitae. Anytime we see them, We clip them off and store them in our terrarium until Jess can remember to bring them to Bloomhouse. (Praying mantises are good for flower farms: They eat bugs that are harmful to flowers.)

Brittney was the first on the staff to identify the oothecae, and (because she's weird) had the word "ootheca" as part of her normal vocabulary. However, she mispronounced it saying "oo-oo" like a monkey. Or like ululate, which I did after learning more about the little time-bombs I thought were benignly hanging out in our kitchen..

When LoCoFlo MVP Kira told me the warmth of the shop might trick the baby mantises to hatch early, I had a mini freak-out. After some quick math (5 oothecae x 200 baby praying mantises per ootheca = LoCoFlo shop disaster) I threatened Jess with Trumpian revenge if she did not transport the oothecae to her farm before they exploded:

Gross!


Comments:

Ellen Frost January 09, 2019
Good thing we averted disaster. These people weren’t so lucky!

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