Friday, March 23, 2007


Thanks to Zoe's friend, Si Bo, we are now the proud owners of a box full of silkworms. (For those of you who looked at the picture and sais, "YUCK!" that's my reaction, too!). Si Bo's mom told us the other day that he wanted Zoe to have a present, "small animals." I said, "Isn't that nice," thinking that we were talking about little plastic farm animals, or something. But no, we were apparently talking about LIVE WORMS.

Anyway, the girls are fascinated. They now live in a box in their bedroom, near the nightlight so, as Zoe said, "they don't get afraid in a new place." Several of them have already made their silk cocoons, and we've watched one or two as they've started to make their silk cocoons.
The yellow and white balls in the picture are the cocoons.
They eat nothing but mulberry leaves, and eat continuously for 26 days before starting to build the cocoon. Si Bo's mom gave us a bag full of mulberry leaves, but they've chomped through those, so we're on the lookout for mulberrys on campus. I'm told they are all over, but we haven't seen any so far. (I admit I won't be heartbroken if we never find any and they all starve to death, but I really don't want to have a silkworm funeral, so I guess we'll step up our efforts to find mulberry leaves!).
I had to go online to research silkworms, and was delighted to learn that when the moths hatch from the cocoons they cannot FLY. I had horrible images about our apartment being infested with moths! And then the moths only live for about 3 days, and manage to lay eggs before they die. When the eggs hatch, the babies look like little ants, and then grow up into those yucky white silkworms. So if it works right, we'll have MORE silkworms and MORE cocoons and MORE silkworms and MORE cocoons . . . . And then will probably donate them to Zoe's class before we leave in July! (I tried to convince her to give them to her class now, but she wasn't buying it!)
I guess this counts as Zoe's and Maya's first pets. At least they haven't started naming them . . . yet!

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