Just the back yard!? Nah, I want the front and side yards landscaped in natives too.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Quaking Aspen Supporting Life

Quaking aspen (Populus tremuloides) has long been a favorite of mine. Today, while taking photos, spotted a tiny caterpillar on one leaf, then another of the same species on another. Just last week, I had taken pictures of the larvae of a species of moth. And just today, I discovered that the leaf miners that I sometimes spot on (or should I say in) some of the aspen leaves are actually the larvae of a tiny moth.

I had no idea, that one of my favorite trees supported so much life. Aside from providing food for the larvae, the larvae in turn all too often become food for baby birds.

In the few minutes I was observing the one aspen, I was able to take pictures of all three species. Had the tree not been so small and I hadn't been looking, I'd not have seen the life this tree supports. Since I was a child, I've enjoyed the beauty of this tree...thanks in large part to my mother and father pointing out how much they loved to see the leaves quake in the slightest breeze. In all of this time, I've never seen these hidden treasures...they apparently do not do much noticeable damage so one can have one's tree and let them eat it too! :)

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