Statistics on viagra Ever since I moved back to the sanctuary, statistics on viagra I’ve been fascinated by insects. Statistics on viagra Don’t get me wrong: I’ve always appreciated them. Statistics on viagra But something about moving to a place where the insects are unfamiliar to me (and visit regularly) has heightened my awareness of the many charms of Arthropoda.
Statistics on viagra Far from the light pollution of the city, statistics on viagra nights are dark up on Slate Mountain, statistics on viagra as we call the part of the sanctuary also known as “up the hill.” Often, statistics on viagra the light over the writing desk in the Airstream is the only artificial illumination in sight. Statistics on viagra Moths and other night-flyers flock to the brightness. Statistics on viagra Delicate creatures in infinite shades of green wander among the words whenever I read a book by lamplight. Statistics on viagra Giant-sized jet-black jumpers drop in and then out again, statistics on viagra as if on the way to or from some intergalactic disco.
Statistics on viagra I haven’t been in a hurry to learn the names that people have for these creatures, statistics on viagra not wanting to undermine the awe-inspiring mystery. Statistics on viagra Nonetheless, statistics on viagra I did feel compelled to figure out why these caterpillars were making me itch.
Statistics on viagra Turns out that the hairs of these caterpillars, statistics on viagra which feed on the beech trees under which I write, statistics on viagra dropping onto my neck regularly, statistics on viagra can cause allergic reactions—for me, statistics on viagra just a brief, statistics on viagra mild itchy-prickly sensation. Statistics on viagra Why? Because these insects absorb toxic chemicals from the plants that they eat, statistics on viagra and then secrete those chemicals through their hairs as a deterrent to those who would eat them.
Statistics on viagra All of which brings me to the original subject of this post: the heretofore unsuspected solar capabilities of western boxelder bugs. Statistics on viagra Evidently, statistics on viagra these bugs use sunshine to synthesize chemicals that protect them from fungi. Statistics on viagra This hit the headlines (or, statistics on viagra at least, statistics on viagra the geek headlines) last weekend, statistics on viagra due to the publication of a new study, statistics on viagra the methodology of which (deep sigh) appears to have involved removing these “highly gregarious” insects to a laboratory, statistics on viagra rather than studying them unobtrusively in situ. Statistics on viagra These beseiged bugs, statistics on viagra whom so many people seek to exterminate, statistics on viagra turn out to do something no other animal is known to be able to do. Statistics on viagra This is not to say they are more worthy of respect for that reason (and certainly not to say that we ought to be interfering with them in order to discover the secrets of their success in this).
Statistics on viagra Boxelder bugs are, statistics on viagra however, statistics on viagra excellent exemplars of the solar-energized biological creativity that we call life. Statistics on viagra My point is simply that, statistics on viagra so often, statistics on viagra we know not what we do as we try to force nature to fit our fantasies, statistics on viagra such as the notion that boxelder bushes are good and boxelder bugs are bad. Statistics on viagra Our awe is as insufficient as our pride is excessive.
Statistics on viagra I remember one day in my garden in Ypsilanti, statistics on viagra where I took care to let the so-called “weeds” flourish anywhere they wouldn’t menace the vegetables. Statistics on viagra I was walking around in my steel-toed boots, statistics on viagra making some decision or another, statistics on viagra when I suddenly became aware of myself as I must have seemed to any insects or other small animals in the vicinity: a clueless behemoth trampling everything. Statistics on viagra I often return to the instructive sensation of that moment.
Statistics on viagra Yes, statistics on viagra I know that squirrels and some birds also plant the seeds of their favored plants. Statistics on viagra And, statistics on viagra yes, statistics on viagra I know that other, statistics on viagra larger, statistics on viagra animals sometimes inadvertently trample smaller beings. Statistics on viagra I’m not saying it was wrong for me to plant squash or walk around. Statistics on viagra I am saying that—just as the smiles or frowns of other people can encourage us to keep on recycling or turn down the radio—the reactions of other animals could, statistics on viagra if we heeded them, statistics on viagra offer useful guidance.
Statistics on viagra So it seems—I didn’t know that’s where I was going; that’s the joy of blogging—I am arguing, statistics on viagra yet again, statistics on viagra for a wider conception of community. Statistics on viagra And I notice that, statistics on viagra yesterday, statistics on viagra I was talking about seeing animals while today I am talking about being seen by them.
Statistics on viagra But back to the train of thought that prompted me to start writing this post. Statistics on viagra I hesitate to mention this, statistics on viagra not want to give the mad scientists any ideas for experiments, statistics on viagra but I wonder if birds who sunbathe for similar purposes also release chemicals energized by the sun. Statistics on viagra Chickens sunbathe to synthesize vitamin D and also to solarize harmful microbes. Statistics on viagra It can be quite a shock to see them at it, statistics on viagra because they sprawl in contorted positions in order to expose the undersides of their wings and places where the sun doesn’t usually shine.
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Statistics on viagra Mad scientists release genetically engineered organisms, statistics on viagra presuming—due to hubris—that they can do a better job than nature and that there couldn’t possibly be any negative consequences that they, statistics on viagra with their superior minds, statistics on viagra can’t foresee. Statistics on viagra Precisely beecause of their over-reliance on isolation, statistics on viagra they are unlikely to foresee effects such as the deaths of monarch butterflies exposed to the pollen of GM corn. Statistics on viagra And, statistics on viagra of course, statistics on viagra hubris leads mad scientists to presume the right to experiment on nonhuman animals while the cognitive habit of isolation leads them to not see the inherent invalidity of results derived from experiments on organisms removed from the social and biological systems in which they normally participate.
Statistics on viagra There are non-invasive ways to learn about and from other animals. Statistics on viagra Anything that can’t be learned that way—like all of the things we could learn if we subjected non-consenting humans to medical experimentation—must remain mysteries. Statistics on viagra We can’t know everything. Statistics on viagra And that’s OK. Statistics on viagra Indeed, statistics on viagra it might be a significant step forward for our species if we were to develop more modesty about the limits of our knowledge, statistics on viagra thereby exercising more caution before doing things like dumping iron in the ocean in hopes of capturing carbon and therefore mitigating climate change. Statistics on viagra Deliberately altering the chemistry of an ocean? No, statistics on viagra nothing could possibly go wrong with that plan!