Friday, August 17, 2012

Horn Worm Meets His Maker

My love for photography and spending alot of time outdoors this summer has allowed me to capture some of nature's most unusual sites.

Sometimes tomato horn worms are hard to spot because they blend with the green foliage of the plant. These worms are actually the larvae of a huge moth and will grow to 3 1/2 to 4 inches in length. This ugly worm stuck out like a sore thumb because of all the tiny white cocoons attached to it's body.  Turns out the tiny white cocoons attached to the horn worm are parasitic wasps that eat on the larvae and eventually kill it! Apparently, this is a good thing, as the horn worms can destroy your crops in a very short amount of time. 

Eventually the parasitic wasps will break out of their cocoons and fly away, preying on other horn worms that may be in your garden and reproduce to protect your tomato plants next year.


Tracy said...

Too bad I don't have my chameleon anymore. Tekco loved these worms...minus the wasp larvae. It's gross but at the same time it's so interesting how nature takes care of nature.

Jan n Jer said...

I agree with Trace...gross but fascinating to see nature so up close. The larvae looks like tiny tic tacks!

Georgia Girls said... have more patience than I do to just let Mother Nature do her job. Yikes!


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