Go Darke

Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it

Erratic Erudition, Nature

Arthropod agronomy

I have Hodotermitidae. Which sounds like something you might have caught spelunking in crevasses with dubious hygienic standards. Or, I suppose, having your crevasse questionably spelunked. Let me not be partisan about this sort of thing.

Lets go with harvester termites. They live under the lawn outside my kitchen. They don’t really worry me. In fact I am inclined to forget about them altogether. Once or twice a year they swarm, sending their kin off into the night sky, creating an explosive frenzy of flying protein for the bats of my suburb (and the German shepherd, who feels challenged to eat them, albeit with long-teeth). But otherwise they keep to themselves, doing whatever it is that arthropods do, a mutual understanding that ensures I don’t ever have to wage chemical warfare on them from above.

Every so often however, they decide to go on this epic agricultural pursuit. For about a day or so they are very busy hauling spores out of their burrows and depositing them outside. Last night it drizzled and behold this morning at 5am when I let the dogs out the lawn was awash in mushrooms…

Apparently they’re non toxic. Even (with a cursory google search) edible. Although I am reticent to add them to my risotto just yet. I am not very brave when in comes to mushrooms. I like my fungi packaged and clearly labelled with universalisms like Shiitake or Portabello. I am a gourmand Conservative. (how awful for me)

It is however fascinating to me to watch creatures that are not human farming their own food. You know, before I crush them with my boot to remind them who is really in charge…

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ERRATIC ERUDITION

2 Comments

  1. crustytuna

    at

    “Which sounds like something you might have caught spelunking in crevasses with dubious hygienic standards. Or, I suppose, having your crevasse questionably spelunked.” <– this is gold 😂

    1. Jo

      at

      As a medical professional I am sure you have seen your fair share of misadventures stemming from poorly planned expeditions to plumb the depths of some or other cavernous entity. It’s a dangerous business… spelunking I mean.

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