FOUR BUGS VISITING

The weather has been too chilly for there to be much insect activity at night over the past few weeks. The first two featured are visitors to my study where this one came to inspect the texture of my work surface:

Followed by this one that was doing a quality check on the paper I use:

More interesting as far as their patterned wings are concerned are these two moths which have visited my bedroom recently. The first one tried to help me solve a crossword:

While the second thought it was raining inside the bottle.

MEET SONGOLOLO

There are so many songololos around at this time of the year that one has to be careful not to crush them underfoot – or to drive over them! We had one in our kitchen recently that kept appearing in the most busy area. After nudging it gently out of the way a few times, I waited for it to roll itself into a spring-like coil before picking it up to take it outdoors. Not long after it – or another one – was back!

Songololo is the delightful South African name for this millipede and comes from the Nguni for ‘roll up’ – which what it does when alarmed. Their preferred habitat is somewhere shady and humid. They are both herbivores and detritivores for they eat decaying matter such as leaves and fruit which have fallen to the ground and started to rot.