Not a snail
As I walked in Lockhart State Park on November 3rd, I eyed the bright red fruit of some Carolina snailseed, a common vine in central Texas. Then I thought I saw a tiny snail some distance away on another vine, Clematis drummondii, and I was taken with the idea of a snail near some snailseed. When I got closer, though, I quickly saw that the snail wasn’t a snail. No, it was clearly the larva of an insect, but I had no idea what kind. I e-mailed Val Bugh (thanks, Val) and she told me it’s probably Labidomera clivicollis, a milkweed leaf beetle. Call this critter one strange dude if you like: I don’t think it will object, and I won’t either.
© 2012 Steven Schwartzman