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Close up Cochineal

Kat has been asking for a macro lens. Eye have taken care of it.

macro eyelashes 

So let's see something I found in the yard, in stunning detail:

pricklypear cactus west lake hills tx 

When Cortez landed in Mexico (early 1500s), the dude was hoping to find gold. What he noticed early on, the local folks wore garments featuring red color, that didn't fade. This was something that they didn't have back home in Europe. He found that they were harvesting a tiny bug found on prickly pear cactus. Quite the opportunist, he loaded up his boat with bug laden cactus. For the next three hundred years, Spain cornered the market on red dye. The French had enough of that. They eventually figured out how/where, started to make their own. The British soon joined in and now we all have red dye available.

Our back yard has prickly pear, and the cochineal bug. Let us get closer...

cochineal bug west lake hills tx  



and closer....

close up cochineal carmine bug 


Check your food ingredients. If you find "CARMINE", it's made from these little bugs.

Let's get a close up of the prickly pear cactus flower while we’re here:

prickly pear cactus flower  


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