Observations: Socrates, Poison Hemlock, Fennel Aphids, and Multicolored Asian Lady Beetles


Poison hemlock (Conium maculatum, family Apiaceae) is one of the deadliest plants in North America. This non-native invasive weed contains highly toxic piperidine alkaloid compounds, including coniine and gamma-coniceine, which cause respiratory failure and death when ingested by mammals. So, how can fennel aphids survive sucking juices from the plant that killed Socrates and how can lady beetles survive eating the aphids?
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Joe Boggs