"Bayou Bill" Scifres
Dedicated to the conservation and enjoyment of Indiana's natural resources
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Indiana Hickory
Copyright © 2003 by Bill Scifres
A beautiful spring flower that few Hoosiers see . . . even though we are surrounded by them in the spring. . . A hickory nut worm emerging from a nut. . .
These are the flowers of a species of hickory tree common in Indiana. Each flower develops as a nut . . . some parasites (especially one of the weevil family which some entomologists call the hickory nut weevil) deposit their eggs in the flower and they hatch inside the developing nut . . . using the kernel as food until fall when they chew their way out of the nut, fall and burrow into the earth where they develop a semi-hard pupa shell and live until spring . . . they emerge in the following spring as adults to reinact the cycle and  perpetuate the species. The  worms are between one-fourth and one-half inch long . . . the nut a little longer than one inch . . . a shellbark variety. . . the meats of hickory nuts, incidentally, are just as tasty and nourishing for humans as they are for hickory nut worms. 

All columns are copyrighted by Bill Scifres and may not be reproduced in any form without prior permission from the author.  For reproduction permission and media usage fees, contact: Bill Scifres, 6420 East 116th Street, Fishers, IN 46038, E-mail: billscifres@aol.com

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