Wes and I took a much needed break yesterday! We loaded up the kayaks and headed over to the lake, and since it had been over two months since we’ve been on the water, I was very excited about returning to one of our happy places! It was a beautiful day, with calm waters and partly cloudy skies, which was a blessing with our current heatwave. We paddled to a beautiful spot for lunch, and very much enjoyed cooling off in the icy water for awhile beforehand. And yes, this was my seat (below) during lunch as well, and it was perfect! I don’t know about you, but for me there’s something extremely relaxing and restorative about being in or on the water.
While paddling along after lunch, I spotted several gorgeous siren-red Cardinal Flowers scattered along the bank, and they certainly brighten up anyones day.
Farther along, I stopped for a few minutes and enjoyed watching several bumble bees and a big hover fly drinking the sweet nectar of what appeared to be a Carolina Jasmine. At one point the hover fly, or friendship bee as we call them here, was obviously living up to its name, as it landed and went up into the very same blossom that a bee was in and amazingly neither one of them seemed to mind!
While I had already deemed it a wonderful time, it got even better later on! I was relaxingly paddling along and watching the bank slowly pass me by, when suddenly I noticed what looked like a BIG mint green fishing lure laying on one of the rocks nearby. So I paddled over to investigate it further, and when I saw that it was moving, I realized it was a giant caterpillar and not a lure as I had previously suspected. I was completely taken back by the sheer size of it, as I had never seen such a huge caterpillar before!
It was truly amazing and I can’t tell you how blessed I felt to be given the chance to see this awesome critter! From a distance it appeared to have a cute almost clown-like face, and honestly looked too big and amazing to be real!
As I was taking photos and videos of it, it walked over and started munching something off of the moist rock nearby. I was completely mesmerized and could’ve spent the remainder of the afternoon, sitting right there and watching this beautiful creature. After returning home later that day, I looked up “big green caterpillars” and discovered that it’s among the largest of our native saturniid caterpillars, measuring up to 6 inches in length! I later told Wes that this amazing hickory horned devil or Regal Moth caterpillar was about the size of a hotdog . . . really unbelievable!
Speaking of awesome critters, I was delighted to see this little toad while walking about one morning this past week!
See our miniatures in person this week
Animal Impressions Show
August 21 – November 7, 2021: The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Tucson, AZ
We are delighted to have our history-making tour on display in this beautiful museum! So if you’re in, or are going to be in the area, plan a visit to see over 60 of our miniature paintings in person, grab a magnifying glass and experience the “wow factor!” And if you fall in love with one . . . well, it can be yours forever, as all paintings in the exhibition are available.
To see our available miniature paintings, visit our WEBSITE here: artofwildlife.com
Contact us by EMAIL here: firstname.lastname@example.org
Until Next Time ~ Rachelle