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Blueberry Season: Stink Bug Eggs

Mary’s been picking blueberries and freezing them for winter treats, a process that involves inspecting each berry laid out on the tray.

This one failed QC:

Blueberry with eggs - overview

Blueberry with eggs – overview

A closer look shows some remarkable structures:

Blueberry with eggs - detail

Blueberry with eggs – detail

Unfortunately, they’ll probably turn into Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs. This is not a Good Thing, because those stink bugs will devastate fruit harvests, including all the apple orchards along the entire Hudson Valley, over the next few years.

They may be Predatory Stink Bugs, which would be unusual in Dutchess County, but not nearly so awful.

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  1. #1 by rkward on 2013-08-06 - 08:01

    They also enjoy my strawberries and tomatoes. Nature can be a real challenge sometimes!

    • #2 by Ed on 2013-08-06 - 09:12

      Aye!

      Sometimes I think Nature would get along much better without us, though… [sigh]

  2. #3 by Jason Doege on 2013-08-06 - 08:25

    I don’t know much about stink-bug eggs but is there a reason aside from perceptual grossness why they can not be eaten? Are they a health risk or do they affect the flavor? I am wondering if I need to be doing more than my typical rinsing my store-bought blueberries under water for a minute because I doubt modern agricultural QC is anything more than, “Does it look like a small blue pebble? then in it goes,” and nothing close to the level of Mary’s. I have come to suspect, lately, that happiness might be in inverse proportion to knowledge.

    • #4 by Ed on 2013-08-06 - 09:11

      why they can not be eaten?

      Although we’re told that eating one’s enemies brings a certain satisfaction, we can’t do it… even though we were early subscribers to The Food Insect Newsletter.

      And that’s despite the recent batch of articles in all our magazines about the wonders of entomophagy.

      We also have a copy of To Serve Man, but we’re not going there, either…

      • #5 by Jim R on 2013-08-06 - 20:55

        Doesn’t sound like a good idea to invite oneself over to your place for dinner…

        • #6 by Ed on 2013-08-06 - 21:57

          Oh, we can fit you in somewhere. [grin]

  3. #7 by Red County Pete on 2013-08-06 - 11:52

    Glad we don’t have stink bugs to deal with. Our garden pests tend to have 4 feet and a taste for green beans. We lost 95% of our bean plants, with the only survivors growing in pots too tall for ground squirrels. They don’t like zucchini, and the tomatoes, strawberries, and such are in a squirrel-resistant greenhouse. One of these days, I’ll have to install a fixture so I can water inside without keeping the door open.

    Our bug problems run to bark beetles–lots of Ponderosa Pine stands have been hit. My neighbor has lost some trees, and there are large patches of federal land with dead trees all around. No fun when those get involved in a wildfire.

    • #8 by Ed on 2013-08-06 - 14:50

      Our garden pests tend to have 4 feet

      So far this season, Mary hasn’t had any of the two-legged variety…

      • #9 by Red County Pete on 2013-08-07 - 11:04

        The two-legged pests like to go after greener crops, but those farmers use lead-based pesticides. Our tomatoes ain’t that attractive to them, so we’re left alone. [grin]

  4. #10 by Raj on 2013-08-06 - 23:00

    I thought by now you would have analyzed the glue they use to fix the eggs and wrote an article on it!

    • #11 by Ed on 2013-08-06 - 23:09

      The only thing I know about bug glue is that I wish somebody bottled it: the stuff sticks better than urethane and fills better than JB Weld.

      Number One good!