Saturday, 10 August 2013

Myriad of Mini Beasts

One of the beautiful things about summer is the way life blooms outside.  As well as the trees bearing fruit and flowering plants, children also remind us there are lots of mini beasts that come out to play.  The bumblebees have been attracted to the flowering sage in our garden and both bees and butterflies have loved visiting the purple loosestrife.

I have also planted some hyssop, evening primrose, chives and maiden pink brilliancy in the hope of attracting wildlife in the garden in future years (and providing some edible flowers for my family and mindees!).  Children tend to sit and stare and get involved with the plants and dirt in the garden more than adults and thus every creature is spotted and asked about.

The other day we spotted a caterpillar and thanks to the power of Instagram Rachel at fizzpopbangblog identified it as a lime hawk moth.  We were able to find photos and pictures online documenting the life cycle of the lime hawk moth which was a lovely way to visually learn more about it.

A few months ago Ethan developed a slight fear of spiders but since we now let them crawl on us feeling the way they tickle and he names them (the last one was called Squeaky) he has grown to love them.  Most of the time when we encounter mini beasts we look at them and don't touch.  If a bee or wasp is close we stay still & observe them and I try not to panic the children.  In my experience those who get stung are usually the ones freaking out the most around bees or wasps.

The only mini beast that I really have trouble with irrational fear with is the slug.  But this video of them mating shows that even they are capable of amazing beauty and ingenuity.

I am planning on building a wildlife hotel as shown here with the children to extend their learning and love of mini beasts further and will update when I have!

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