Tag Archives: Bugs

Ladybirds Ate My Wifi

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Lovely wifi eating ladybirds

 

Seriously, you couldn’t make this stuff up.

In Auckland when we lost our internet connection ( and alongside it, very quickly our sanity – #firstworldproblems) it was normally storms, power cuts or greedy teenagers gobbling up our monthly allowance.

But in the almost 2 years since we moved to Paradise, even though we are distinctly of rural setting and have lived through some significant events including earthquake, our wifi has never been affected.

Until today.

A few minutes ago I heard something I never thought I could hear in this life or any other.

Ladybirds had managed to find a way to take up residence in the receiver box on the roof and block the signal. Not just any old insects or ( as expected) likely  rodents….., no, these were ladybirds. About 50 of them.

And then the clincher, “ and this is about the third time I’ve seen this happen over the last few weeks….”, said our straight faced technician. So, serial wifi blockers.

Why is it that the thought of ladybirds gathering in such a way is almost poetic and they are so easily forgiven for the disruption they’ve caused to my ability to work and ( let’s be honest) be on social media today! A mouse gnawing through a cable would receive much harsher comment…and treatment.

So, we may be able to survive earthquake and storm but when it comes to ladybirds, there is no contest.

I’m now off to liberate said clever ladybirds into a new and not so disruptive environment.

Fi

Something’s bugging me

Literally .

Although not just something . I know exactly what it (they) is (are).

There were a few things that failed to make it on to the property particulars when we moved to Marlborough and, more specifically, to Paradise.

One was the wind in late spring / early summer. Although we had visited the area many many times, we must have just hit lucky on avoiding the wind. Windy Wellington – your more beautiful and slightly wine addled neighbour across the Strait can most certainly give you a run for your money on the wind front – at least for part of the year.

But that’s not it.

What’s bugging me is bugs.

Not affecting me personally, but there’s most certainly a fleeting possibility of threat for our precious babies budding out in the vineyard.

At a certain time of year (now) , the brown beetles or May bugs ( creatively named after their annual appearance in the northern hemisphere ) awaken from neighbouring paddocks to strike fear into the hearts and pockets of grape growers. The bugs choose to burst into life as the sun sets on beautiful days and, from nearby paddocks, aim for the moon and land on the vines. If they get their chance they will then happily procreate and eat their way through the leaves and buds, potentially causing damage.

My first reaction on hearing about our unknown challenge  was confidence that there must be something that could deter them ( or more accurately blitz them into oblivion). But being organic, with a karma-esque attitude to living things, we have found our options are limited.

So, our ritual now is an enforced walk of the vineyard every night as darkness creeps in. Torches in hand, we inspect the leaves and flick the bugs to the ground, where they can no longer do any damage.

No matter how many times we are told by those who have considerable experience in this : “ you’ll know when you have a problem” – ( thankfully, we haven’t found out so far) – we still spend our time cursing the little bug(ger)s and counting how many we knock off. Although a swarm in the thousands is what we are told will indicate an issue (?!) , we still feel the overwhelming need to protect our babies and that’s where it gets compulsive. We are the equivalent of first-time parents. Anxious to do the right thing but no experience yet to give us any real perspective. Being told that we are probably the only growers paying such attention is little comfort.

Although small numbers of bugs will not cause damage, the very fact they are there ‘bugs’ M & I . So we currently spend our evenings knocking as many off leaves as we can, while acknowledging nightly that we can’t get around every single vine.

But we still try.

A good friend who is born and bred in both the area and the industry and therefore experienced in such matters, not so reassuringly said to me, “ you really don’t have a problem until they’re mating on your eyeballs….” .

Now there’s a less than comforting thought to hold for the next few weeks…..

But. 

And there’s always a but!

This has given us the pleasure of having a nightly walk together under glorious inky skies. The doodles happily chase hedgehogs and whatever else they pick up a scent on. We talk. We appreciate our surroundings. We count blessings.

Welcome to Paradise !

Yours (hopefully) bug free,

Fi

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The little                  brown bug(ger)s!