Now that Thanksgiving is over and done, we’re all about that Christmas tree life. As November draws to a close, we’re probably all getting ready to put up our Christmas trees. Some of us might be digging them out of storage in the garage, or looking to see where we can buy a fresh one.
Personally, I love a fresh Christmas tree. The smell of pine filling your home throughout the month of December is one of the holiday memories that I miss most about my childhood. Nowadays, I’m all about that plastic tree life, but someday I’ll give the real thing a go again.
But for those who are getting real trees, there is a downside to watch out for: little creepy crawlers that might be hidden with the pine needles. As wonderful as real Christmas trees can be, there are a number of little insects that like to hide within the trees. And sometimes, it’s their egg sacs that you have to watch out for.
On Facebook, someone posted a warning about checking your trees for walnut-sized lumps prior to throwing on your decorations. As it turns out, these large lumps aren’t a naturally occurring part of the tree. Instead, they’re egg sacs that contain hundreds of little baby praying mantises. While praying mantis are great predators to have in the garden, you certainly don’t want them making themselves at home inside your house.
As reported by the Rainforest Alliance, praying mantis are native to warmer, more tropical environments such as North America or the southern portion of Europe. The website further explained that there are different species of the mantid insect, and they vary from location, but they all belong to the same Mantidae family of insect. But just because they’re known to make themselves at home in these regions doesn’t mean they can’t be found elsewhere, like the UK.
As the Manchester Evening News had previously reported, some mantis may be found in certain types of trees such as the Norway Spruce, Scots Pine, or Fraser Fir. It added that experts believe the warmer temperatures inside homes may account for a quicker hatch time amongst the egg sacs.
This would mean you could have as many as 100 to 200 unwanted house guests over the Christmas holiday, as Daniel Reed pointed out on Facebook a few years back. His post, which recently resurfaced, warned that if anyone saw these walnut-sized pods to clip the branch and remove them from the home as they’re egg sacs full of hundreds of baby mantises.
The post received a lot of attention with 180,000 shares and 8,000 comments. Most of the comments were from those who had no idea and were grateful to have not had to learn a hard lesson. One person mentioned in their comment that had it not been for the warning, they just would’ve assumed that it was a deformed pine cone. And someone else joked that they’d never buy a real tree again after this.
At least the information is out there. And it’s better than waking up to a Christmas morning full of little tiny praying mantises! Did you know about the egg sacs? Let us know!Whizzco