Andrews, western NC, July 25, 2020. I doubt this is an American Dagger Moth, as the caterpillar – at least at this tiny stage – has no yellow fuzz at all, just smooth yellow, though with a multitude of dagger-life black spikes. It’s also sitting on a cucumber leaf, not up in various trees of its normal habitat. Maybe this is normal for the beginning stages.
Having said that, the biodiversity in WNC is immense, and the variations of the “norm” seen elsewhere are quite marked both in flora and fauna. Lots of “That’s unique!” going on here. I’m not sure if this one has both pros and cons. Some caterpillars are benign. Some inflict horrific health conditions. Some are to be especially tolerated for what they do later as moths and butterflies.
I’m no Lepidopterologist (I had to look that up…). I’m just putting this up for interest. It’s so easy to love the natural world that our dear Lord created:
- “For what can be known about God is evident […], because God made it evident […]. Ever since the creation of the world, His invisible attributes of eternal power and divinity have been able to be understood and perceived in what He has made.” (Romans 1:19-20)
The Lord makes it ever so easy to walk with Him when out in the creation He created.
Meanwhile, me being me, I thought of my EDC when I saw the name “American Dagger”:
This contraption is carried on the belt on the left side, just across from the appendix-carried Glock 19. The easy snap-in holster for the knife is attached to the paddle holster for the magazines, carried semi-horizontally for the quickest possible switch imnsho. The straight blade is 2.5″, just slightly longer than the American Dagger Caterpillar when it is full grown. The knife is upside down, if you will, as my left hand – weak hand – can grab it in what is already, then, an upside-up position for the hand straight out of the holster. Perfect.
The American Dagger Moth is quite benign, just like the caterpillar. The same goes for the Glock 19 and the knife. The knife is used all day long, in gardening, in opening letters and boxes. It’s a tool just like Glock is a tool. The caterpillar has spikes, tools that are useful in defense against unjust aggression.
Speaking of that, some say with a smile: “A minister with a gun?” finding this to be curiously humorous. When I mention that I’m also the police chaplain and that 2nd amendment capacities are prudent and moral, describing some of the situations one can and does get into accompanying officers, their exclamation turns into: “A minister with a gun!”, that is, no longer with a question mark, but with quiet admiration, nodding their heads in agreement.
Mind you, I’m not a law enforcement or any kind of officer. I don’t do that. But if someone’s actively pumping bullets into an officer, it’s entirely within the purview of the 2nd amendment for a citizen, a civilian, to exercise 2nd amendment capacities to protect a victim suffering from mortal unjust aggression wherein the imminent provision of death is actively in progress. One uses the least amount of force to repel that unjust aggression, whatever that least amount happens to be. It’s the last thing you would ever want to be involved in. It is what it is in this fallen world. Lest anyone think that there is such thing as unjust aggression at all, here’s just a few minutes with the great Kayleigh McEnany:
Our Lord has created the animals with tools for their defense.
The greatest of all prophets, John the Baptist, gave advice and encouragement to the law enforcement – even of occupying forces! – so that they too might be saved, not apart from their duties, but as they carry out their duties.
Our Lord Himself does not shy away from The Battle of The War. He also has the proper tools. And… and… He is the last one standing:
A few scars to be sure in His hands and feet and side. He’s good with that. We thank Him for it. Amen.
Be the caterpillar, with great charity and goodness and kindness. But be the caterpillar. Our Lord expects it of you.