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7

Our penstemons have been flowering.

Nectar from these flowers are a favorite food of hummingbirds and all sorts of bees.

A few days ago I also noticed some eggs on the flower petals.

They are the eggs of the cabbage looper moth. We've seen them in the yard before.

What is that sliver-like thing that is walking over the eggs?

It is a thrips!

Different species of thrips feed on a wide variety of items, including flower pollen and insect eggs. I'm not sure whether this one was feeding or not.

In any case, the eggs had all disappeared the next day. They may have hatched or they may have been eaten.

Who knew so much drama could occur within a single flower?

Do penstemons grow where you live? Are they blooming yet?

The weather is warming, the sun is shining. Time for insects!

The tiny brown slivers in this flower are actually thrips. The easiest way to see them is to dump a flower upside down onto a white piece of paper.

If you have a microscope, look at the wings of adults. Thrips have a fringe of hairs on their wings.

I tried to get a better photograph with a doubler, but it was too windy. The flowers were bobbing around.

Caught a great photograph of a honey bee with it, though. I wonder how they interact with thrips.

Have you ever seen a thrips?

(Trivia:  Thrips is unusual because both the singular and plural forms are the same word: thrips.)