Sunday, April 13, 2008

The Birds and Bees and Bats and Bugs and Beetles

It has been unseasonably hot the past few days and along with the warm temperatures have come a plethora of bugs. All kinds of bugs! There are swarms that rise up out of the grass as you walk through it, or even when you don't. There are bugs on the windows, in the house, over the pool, in the pool and just about everywhere else. Tons of bugs. Mostly flying bugs. But oddly enough, there are few bugs on any of the plants.

I attribute this phenomenon to the fact that I stopped the use of chemicals in the gardens when we moved in a little over a year ago and now there is an imbalance. When chemicals where being used there was also an imbalance of no bugs and now the pendulum has swung the other way.

I remember the same thing happened in the garden in Laguna when I went totally organic. The first few couple of years I used to joke that you could tell I was an organic gardener because my garden looked like crap. It took until the third year for everything to balance out and then it was amazing. I suspect the same is happening here. It will probably take a while for the natural predators to find my yard and get the upper hand. I put out bird seed and we have quite a few seed eaters, but it typically takes a bit longer for the birds and bats that feast on insects to discover a natural habitat. I hope they find it soon!

This morning we saw a number of hawks in the sky. There is one that we have noticed for a couple days now that has been landing in one of our tallest palm trees. I am not sure what kind of hawk it is yet. There are large populations of crows and ravens around here, but these are the first hawks we have noticed.

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