By Contributing Mama Daphne Biener
Ok, forget what I said over at A Greener Biener last week. Things are heating up around here, and when I say heating up, this time I do mean, wink wink, things are getting HOT.
I’m behaving. But come on, I just finished three weeks of school vacation. That’s three long weeks of full-on, 24/7, girl-time. By which of course, I mean, time spent at home with my two darling girls.
We did manage to get out a handful of times, mostly to call upon our fine furry friends. And what we saw on those visits had me turning the camera away from the adorable kiddos and outward in the pursuit of science. For the record, I saw neither birds nor bees. But everyone else was pouring on the hot and heavy like the survival of the species depended on it.
The humans of this planet may be spending their post-holly-jollies moping around, but not so for our friends in the animal kingdom. Those fellas know how to counter the wintertime blues.
Take for example the butterflies. I learned from some punk on college break an educated zoologist that these beautiful creatures live only 2-4 weeks. But they don’t let that fact get them down. Or maybe they do, if you count down and dirty that is.
Here look, my first naturalist photograph. I call it Hot Wing-on-Wing Butterfly Action —
Maybe I have a dirty mind. Or maybe the animals have a message for us. I think the butterfly sex was merely a gateway encounter, because the next stop on this Winter Break Road Trip of Animal Intercourse Encounters were these wild and crazy poison dart frogs —
That fellow wasn’t just frisky, he was chivalrous. Look how he takes a turn, then let’s her climb aboard for some fun. Perhaps you’ve heard the dart frog motto: full of poison, full of fun!
In the interest of full frontal, I mean, full disclosure, I was a grown woman pointing and giggling. I was poised with my camera at the steamy glass enclosure with no plans of moving on when I overheard Kira, my eight year-old, explaining to the teenagers behind me,
“My mom is taking a picture of the frogs. They’re mating.”
Ok then, moving right along…
I didn’t get to linger very long over the love lives of these crusty old crustaceans. Five year-old Acadia explained that my flash was what sent them scurrying. I barely had time to make amends for breaking up the action when Acadia added,
“Oh well, I bet they would have been yummy, right Mom?”
Right on kid.
I put an end to my little birds and bees bonanza before the girls aged enough to know they should have been mortified by my childish behavior. In my defense, they were home from school for three weeks. Three Whole Weeks.
By the time we left the animals behind, I think I had matured a bit too. After all, I didn’t make the kids stick around to see what these guys were up to —
I knew where all that cuddling was headed. But we had places to go. It’s not as if I can spend my children’s entire vacation watching animals have sex.
At least that’s how I’m telling it. Even if the evidence seems to say otherwise.