Bugs You Can Eat

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Mopane caterpillars

Faith: Catching mopane worms is messy and hard on the hands. The worms have thornlike points on their backs that are sharp enough to slice unwary fingers. … Julie [a local woman] grabs a handful, and holding them tightly at one end, she squeezes out the insides from the other end. Bright green and yellow juice spurts out—instant death for the caterpillar—and then the worms are tossed into the bucket [to be stewed later as seen here]. The guts smell like freshly crushed leaves, which is exactly what they are. The cycle—pick, squeeze, toss—happens over and over, filling the buckets to capacity as the day heats up.

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