Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Boys Are Back!

Dad, Ethan, and Noah just got back from their Father/Son Retreat! They left on Wednesday, and came home Friday night at around 11:30. They always enjoy this special time with Dad, but boy did we miss them!
They enjoyed:
-hiking through the woods
-swimming in the creek
-eating MRE
-sliding down Sliding Rock
-swinging off the rope swing into the creek
-picking apples
-Bible lessons
-and much, much more that we are just beginning to hear about!
Each of the fathers gave a lesson for the boys. Dad's was interesting...
It's A Bugs Life
Although the thought may disgust you, eating bugs may mean the difference between life and death in an extended survival situation. Sure, you can go for weeks without food, but you will be weak and have difficulties thinking and staying alert. It would be much better to set aside your disgust and take advantage of protein, fat, and vitamins that bugs can provide.
"In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, 'Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand'. For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying, 'The voice of one crying in the wilderness, prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight'. And the same John had his raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey. Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judea, all region round about Jordan, and were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins."
Matthew 3:1-6
"Even these of them ye may eat; the locust after his kind, and the bald locust after his kind, and the beetle after his kind, and the grasshopper after his kind."
-Leviticus 11:22
"And all they of the land came to a wood; and there was honey upon the ground. And when the people were come into the wood, behold, the honey dropped; but no man put his hand to his mouth; for the people feared the oath."
-1 Samuel 14: 25-26
Edible Bugs
Not all bugs are safe to eat so be careful in your selection. The following is a list of six edible bugs along with some tips on how to find them. As you'll see, you'll have the most luck surviving in forests which provide the necessary cover, food, and moisture that many bugs see out.

  1. Insect larvae, also known as grubs, are not only easy to find, but they're easy to collect. They favor cool, damp places so some good spots to look include in rotten logs, under the bark of dead trees, under rocks, and in the ground. Grubs are safe to eat raw, but of course you might find them more palatable cooked.

  2. Grasshoppers are also quite readily found, but they'll be a little more difficult to catch. Start by looking in open fields for the familiar chirping sound. Or just walk through a field and observe the kinds of insects that jump away from your feet. You can increase your chances by collecting them in the cool morning. Before eating a grasshopper, remove its legs because they are barbed and have the potential to get stuck in your throat. Grasshoppers should be cooked because they carry parasites.

  3. Ants can be found in just about all locations throughout the world. Their nests are generally in the ground and that is where you want to attempt to collect them. To start, disturb the nest with a stick. Instinctively, the ants will climb onto the stick to defend their home. As they do, dip the stick into a container of water so that the ants fall off the stick. Continue this process until you have collected an adequate supply of ants. Ants can be safely eaten raw or cooked. One caveat, if you are going to eat the ants raw, be sure they are dead first, otherwise they may bite you.

  4. If there is a damp meadow of forest close to your location, you may have some luck finding slugs. Some slugs are particularly big and so collecting sufficient numbers is much easier than with other bugs. Like grubs, slugs can be eaten raw or cooked with the cooked option makeng them far more appealing.

  5. You probably won't be able to distinguish maggots, which are larvae of flies, from grubs, but they too are safe to eat raw or cooked. They favor damp places where decaying matter is abundant.

  6. Earthworms thrive in moist, warm soil, but you'll need to do a little digging to find then unless they've been force out of the ground by rain. They can be eaten raw or cooked.
Bugs To Avoid
Unfortunately, many of the bugs you come across shouldn't be eaten even in a survival situation. Here are some guidelines for what to avoid.

  1. Bugs that are generally associated with carrying diseases should not be eaten. This includes flies, mosquitoes, and ticks.

  2. Some bugs use poison for capturing prey and for defense making them inedible so avoid centipedes, scorpions, and spiders.

  3. As a general rule, bugs with fine hairs, bright colors, or eight or more legs are off limits.
You can actually sustain yourself quite well with bugs so give them serious consideration when you're otherwise without food and trying to survive in the wilderness. They have additional benefits over animals and fish of being plentiful, not requiring traps, and needing little preparation before they can be consumed.
(References: Wilderness Survival by Gregory J. Davenport)

Posted by Kelsey


  1. Kelsey,

    Do you have any yummy recipes to go along with these all natural food options? We have lots of snails in our yard here in Italy. Are they safe to eat?

  2. Uncle Kurt,
    Well,...let's see! We try to put the whey in as much as possible. So far, it's great in cake, soup, cookies, and anything that calls for water, just so long as you don't add too much! But we did just find out that parsley is really, really good for diabetics! Food for thought! I don't know about snails! That would be interesting! Hope all is going well with you! -Kelsey