Curious case of a bug and her eggs

Curious case of a bug and her eggs

Patterns are so pervasive in nature. As this Wikipedia article on Patterns in nature says,

Patterns in nature are visible regularities of form found in the natural world. These patterns recur in different contexts and can sometimes be modeled mathematically. Natural patterns include symmetries, trees, spirals, meanders, waves, foams, arrays, cracks and stripes.

From the wonderful stripes of tigers and zebras, to the beautiful spots on a leopard’s coat, the magnificent formations of flying birds to the various shapes and designs on many small insects, nature is full of them. However, this pattern was not something that I was ready for, a pattern in egg laying.

This happened quite some time back. Thought of sharing it through a short post.

One of the Sunday evenings, spotted this little bug constantly moving up and down the stalk of the Nerium (Oleander) flower, more commonly known in Tamil as Arali poo. I wondered as to why this individual was on this flower, as it was not one of those nectar feeding types. Then, I ignored it for a while.

When I came back to it after sometime, I noticed that it was a she and that she was busy laying her eggs on the stalk of the flower.  Also, the fact that amazed me was the beautiful, symmetric pattern, in which she was laying her eggs. It looked like a neatly braided two lined pattern, coming down all the way from the top of the stalk holding the flower. She had indeed been scouting for a place to lay her eggs….!

Bug laying eggs

One to the left and the other one to the right, placing the eggs to perfection, forming this beautiful pattern. She was going on about her duty very diligently.

Bug laying eggs

Also, why this particular flower ? This Oleander flower is known for its toxic qualities and is not commonly preferred by many of the nectar feeders or any other kind of flower eating animals.  May be that was the reason, that, this would provide safety for her eggs…Was it just chance or she really knew…!!…..

Amazing how such intricate details get imprinted into the genetic makeup and get passed on for generations…!…..


Anisha Jayadevan

Great observation skills. 🙂 That’s the first time I saw eggs laid in a straight line. The patterns I’ve usually come across radiate in a sort of polygonal shape.
Reply to Anisha Jayadevan
Vijay Krishna

Great spotting Santhosh! I think this is one of the “Seed bugs” and the nymphs & adults feed on the sap of the seeds. A popular seed bug is the Milkweed Seed bug and their host plant is the toxic Milkweed plant, so maybe your bugs are getting theirs from the Oleander seeds. This is just my hunch, so keep and eye out on them in the coming days and see what they are eating 🙂
Reply to Vijay Krishna

GitHub-flavored Markdown & a sane subset of HTML is supported.