a french garden

Reflections on nature in a garden in France


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French stick insect

This little creature attached itself to us in the garden, or rather to the mug of coffee I had left on the grass.  It is not a fast mover and did not object to a close examination.

Close up it looks like a bad imitation plastic toy.

If you think it looks cute, you are not alone.  Stick insects are kept as pets and there are much more exotic varieties for the connoisseur than this one.  At least you would have no problem breeding it as this stick insect (Clonopsis gallica) is parthenogenic, the female can produce viable eggs and the continuity of the species is assured with no male intervention.

It  eats leaves, in particular those of wild roses, brambles, hawthorn and almonds. It is amazingly difficult to see amongst the greenery when it is not moving, especially when it aligns itself alongside a leaf stalk.

This one is bright green, as are all young ones but they will gradually turn darker and become brown, there is already a darkening behind the neck in this one.  I prefer its plastic green colour.