SADDLEBACK FEAST

SADDLEBACK FEAST

A group of Saddleback Caterpillar Moths (Acharia stimulea) devouring Crocosmia leaves. They blend in so well with the surrounding landscape, it’s easy to miss these small creatures.

According to wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saddleback_caterpillar

The saddleback caterpillar (Acharia stimulea, formerly Sibine stimulea) is the larva of a species of moth native to eastern North America. It is also found in Mexico.[1] It occurs south of the Yucatan. The species belongs to the family of slug caterpillars, Limacodidae.

The caterpillar is primarily green with brown at either end and a prominent white-ringed brown dot in the center which resembles a saddle. It has a pair of fleshy horns at either end. These and most of the rest of the body bear urticating hairs that secrete an irritating venom. Contact with the hairs causes a painful, swollen rash and sometimes nausea in humans.[2] In some cases, more severe reactions to the venom can occur. These reactions include a systemic condition called erucism or acute urticaria, for which severe symptoms may include migraines, gastrointestinal symptoms, asthma complications, anaphylactic shock, rupturing of erythrocytes, and hemorrhaging.[3] The hairs should be removed from the skin immediately to prevent more venom spread. Cocoon may also have irritating hairs and hairs from the larva can fall on surrounding objects”

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