failing spectacularly at growing moss (plus the WALPURGISNACHT MANTIS TRAGEDY) but then the REDEMPTION OF BABY MANTIDS

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We had tried. Again. To make moss grow.

On stone. On wood. On a rained-on skein of twine. A sculpture/habitat the kids had created for the impending hatch of baby praying mantids we were awaiting.

But it just turned all brown again.

And then… what? What gross thing was THIS?

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SLIME?

Just… slime. All over the “habitat”. Our best guess is that it was Moss-Tac affected by the rain, but it was rather Blair Witch.

And depressingly, Ben announced, he had gone out late on Saturday night to find that at least one of our egg sacs had hatched, but had been attacked by ants, and all the babies had been killed. Ben put the bell jar with the remaining egg sacs in a bowl of water — so it had a moat — but we didn’t have a lot of hope.

But then…

On Wednesday morning…

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There they were! Safe! And choosing all sorts of interesting surfaces in their Habitat!

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We have not figured out moss yet… but we had fun with mantids.

We’ll be working on the moss thing through the summer. It’s time to finally consult an expert. And for now, our mantids have hidden themselves. We hope to see a few again soon.

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(And we got a few good drawings out of it.)

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(All the mantids were named Lissa.)

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