On being a ladybug

Pickles in contentment, photo by Theresa Barker.

First things first (haha):  Here is Pickles again; she was sleeping so contentedly that I thought I’d share it with you. How do cats make their sleep look so utterly appealing? You just look at a cat asleep and it makes you feel like curling up under the covers yourself.

Just right for a Sunday!

Now, on to my ladybug “sketch”:

Ladybug2
Sketch by Theresa Barker.

On being a ladybug

There is not much to being a ladybug.  She clings to the bright green of a leaf.  She won’t tell, ever, that she is really just a common beetle under a daring red-with-black-dots shell that hides her rather ordinary dust-brown wings.  Only recently they have learned that her ordinary-looking brown wings fold themselves in an unexpectedly sophisticated way.  They make little diamond shapes inside the hard-red carapace wing covers.  She is not ordinary, even in her ordinariness.

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I learned a few weeks ago on NPR’s Science Friday that ladybug wings make a very special folded pattern – in diamond shapes, like origami, when they are tucked under the hard carapace of the beetle.  Scientists are studying the way a ladybug’s wings fold to see if the method can be used for new inventions.  Very fun!

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