August 15, 2010 6:28 am
Found this summer. 5 centimeters long when stretched. Alien like head :D, little black pulped out eyes, black strip from each eye to the back of the head. 1st segment (necklike): pair of small 2 part legs (they look useless but bug uses them when moving around).2nd and 3rd segment: 2 pairs of 3 part slim legs. Each pair on it’s own segment. 4th and 5th: No legs but pair of horns on the top of each. 6th and 7th: pair of caterpillar like legs on both segments and horns. 8th – 10th: caterpillar like legs no horns. 11th: last segment, anus and 2 antenna on left and right of anus. My mom sprayed it, after minte or so it started to pop out dark green liquid out of it’s anus. And of course it started to jerk and twitch till it died.
We are sad to hear that your mother poisoned this harmless and defenseless Lobster Moth Caterpillar, Stauropus fagi. That senseless act is a classic example of Unnecessary Carnage where people feel the need to destroy what they don’t understand. According to the UK Moths website: “This unassuming species gets its English name not from the adult moth, but from the remarkable crustacean-like appearance of the caterpillar. It is mainly distributed in the southern part of Britain, occupying woodland habitats, but is not especially common. The larvae live on the leaves of beech (Fagus), oak (Quercus), and several other trees.“ The UK Moths website only discusses the UK distribution, but the species is found in much of Eurasia. The Moths and Butterflies of Europe and North Africa website has some nice photographs of the adult and caterpillar. The Academic Dictionaries and Encyclopedias website has additional information.