The Potager

The Potager

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

While watering my peppers this morning I saw something white. My first thought was an egg mass of some sort that needed to be destroyed.

I'm glad I took a second look!

It's a tobacco horn worm (the bad) with parasitic wasp cocoons attached (the ugly). These are cocoons of the braconid wasp (the good). This wasp lays it's eggs inside the worm. As they hatch they eat their way out, thus killing the worm. Then the larva spins cocoons which attach to the worm. Soon they will hatch and fly off to find other hornworms to kill.
God bless nature's checks and balances!

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