Friday, May 10, 2013

I should know better...

I Should Know Better...

Isn't she a beauty? Why yes she is!

The camera has been click, click, clicking for the past two and half months now ever since I spied the first flowers begin to appear. Some I've known about and others I have not ever seen since I arrived here over five years ago. Growing up in the Appalachia and Blue Ridge Mountains, a person tends to learn a few things here and there about what to do and what is highly unintelligent. And after the other week's close call with a rattlesnake you would think I would be more careful...weeeeell.  Today I was researching the names of some of the blooms and plants I've been photographing. I happened upon a surprise this evening. I'll just post the photo and it's newfound name and you can probably guess the remainder of the story...

Stinging Cevallia or Stinging Serpent (Cevallia sinuata)
Yeeeeeees. I found out that the cute little blooming blossom here has a reputation. I had no idea. I am so lucky that my hand didn't just reach out and stop it from moving around in the gusty wind that was happening that wonderful warm day. As it was, my face was just a mere five inches from it.

The description states that the bloom, stalk, and leaves are armed with little fuzzy like hairs which actually are minute hypodermic needles that deliver extreme pain if touched and release a toxin into the contacted area. The pain normally subsides after about an hour but redness and itching can continue for days afterwards.

Ain't that so nice folks? But like the title says, I should know better than to touch if I don't know what it is. A person learns this when growing up in the mountains and country but I think I forgot my roots. Well, I will just remember this as another wake up call.

I don't know what has happened this year but along with the flowers there must be a ton of insects that have decided that it's now or never. Below is one that I found waiting for me at the front door after coming home this evening. I've seen this one before and it is uniquely patterned however, it slips my mind as to what the name is. I feel like I'm being stalked by insects. Well, not really, but it sure sounds more dramatic doesn't it?

(Edit: 05/13/2013- I have since researched the ID of the insect in my photo below and it is a dousy as usual. The desert out here sure does produce some interesting and dangerous flora and fauna. The beetle below is called a Striped Blister Beetle (Epicauta vittata). The Striped Blister Beetle, if touched or handled, will produce a powerful toxin that will cause severe blisters and burns. Do Not Handle! This information was taken from the Texas A&M Agrilife Extension website. It also stated that it poses a danger to cattle and horses that if ingested in their hay or feed can cause illness and death to livestock. Well, that's nice ain't it?!  The website stated that there are approx. 100 species listed in Texas. I sent them an email to see if they could identify the species in my photo since they didn't say which species are here in far west Texas. They had species and descriptions for those in east and central Texas. We shall see. Hopefully I will receive a reply.)

Bug No.3
(No bug, insect, or pest was harmed in the making of this stalkermentary)
This evenings Dang Terlingua Sunset was not very spectacular, The weather forecaster on NOAA stated that we had a 20 percent chance of showers this evening. Hmmm. I can tell you where the 20 percent went. To the birds. You can tell in the photo that it was raining about four hundred feet up but it sure never reached the ground. Oh well, better luck the next few days since NOAA is forecasting more chance for rain within the next four days.

That Dang Terlingua Sunset #050913

Have a great day and remember, the world is what we make it.


1 comment:

MsBelinda said...

My goodness what a pretty flower to pack such a punch. For a minute there I thought there was a snake to the left of the flower!

For an insect that one sure has pretty markings.