Still Ex-asp-erated

From door jamb to stick to house to cocoon

From door jamb to stick to house to cocoon—all in one day

Apparently, word is out in the oak trees through the mini mop network that our house is a veritable Motel 6 for puss moth caterpillars. They crawl on it, check in, and, hopefully, fly out in late spring.

Even if they paid for the privilege of climbing up our outside brick or front door jamb (shudder!), I don’t want these toxic freeloaders sharing space with us. In the case of asps, one is a crowd.

After last Friday’s debacle with apparent asp #3, which ended with the creepy critter settling in cocoon style near our original asp high on our outside front entry’s arch, I hoped we were done with the micro-mustache set.

Here we go again!

Here we go again!

Sadly, no. The saga continued the next day when I spied yet another asp scooching up the wall. I was just glad he wasn’t near the front door!

Can you see the little guy? How does he hang on?

Can you see the little guy? How does he hang on?

This latest (dare I pray final?) caterpillar was a traveler. It looked like he wanted to be with the other two cocoons, but he was on the opposite wall. So he traversed the arch towards them.

The great balancing act!

The great balancing act!

The deceptively cute furball moved under and over the arch until he got fairly close to the door jamb asp’s cocoon. But then the noise from the mowing crew seemed to spook him. He turned around, inched a bit, and stopped where he was on the underside of the arch.

Yet another freeloader

Yet another freeloader

And that’s where he’ll stay until a bell rings, and he gets his wings (or have I been watching “It’s a Wonderful Life” too many times?). At least he and his slumbering friends are where they can’t hurt anyone.

So why are we beset with these pests? Do they like our house due to its light color? It is the perfect camouflage for them. But this is the first time in the 16 years we’ve lived here that we’ve noticed them. Perhaps in the past ignorance was bliss.

I’d pull the asp welcome mat . . . if I could find it!

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