Bug of the Week: Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle Nest

Sometimes things do not need to be serious.

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Doesn’t this lady beetle look like it is in a nest?

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Mystery Seed of the Week 222

This photograph is a public domain image that I have cropped to remove the species name. I will reveal the full image in the answer. (It comes with a story).

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Do you recognize what plant the seeds are from? If you choose to, please leave a comment with your ideas.

(New mystery seeds and Seed of the Week answers are posted on Tuesdays.)

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Seed of the Week: Tickseed Sunflower

Our mystery seeds from last week were indeed tickseed sunflowers or common beggarticks, Bidens frondosa.

At least I think they are tickseed sunflowers. There are a number of similar species in the Genus Bidens. If you have a specimen you’d like to identify and you know a little botanical vocabulary, you might try this key.

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The seeds of the tickseed sunflower form in these interesting seed heads.

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The seeds then catch and stick to passing animals, in this case my jeans.

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TheĀ  flowers are small clusters of yellow. They are not very showy.

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The leaves are compound, mostly in groups of three.

Tickseed sunflowers are native to North America and are often found growing in wet areas throughout the continent.

Although the plants can be considered to be a nuisance because of the sticky seeds, the seeds are much easier to remove than burdocks, and they are useful as food for wildlife.The plants are eaten by muskrats, rabbits, and caterpillars. The seeds are eaten by small rodents and birds, particularly waterfowl.

If you have a microscope and someone brings some home on their socks, be sure to take a peek at these fascinating seeds.

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