Honduras: Huge beetle
Location: El Piliguin, Honduras, Central America
November 17, 2011 11:38 am
Evening Mr. Bugman, I recently encountered this huge beetle in Piliguin Mountain, Honduras, Central America. It appears to be a Rove Beetle of some sort, however it far exceeds the size descriptions i have come across. It was hidden under rocky terrain and the approximate length was around 9.0-10.0 cm. (90-100 mm). Thank you in advance 馃檪
Signature: Medjai

Chilincoco:聽 Walkingstick

Deam Medjai,
This positively gorgeous creature is a Walkingstick or Phasmid.聽 Our initial search did not provide any conclusive species or genus identification, but your individual reminds us of an Ecuadorean Walkingstick we posted in the past from the genus
Monticomorpha.聽 Most of the species in the genus have a range limited to Andean highlands, but your email indicates that this individual was found on a mountain.聽 We suspect your individual is closely related and perhaps a member of the same genus, and possibly an undescribed species or a known species with an undocumented range.聽 We hope we are able to turn up something conclusive for you.聽 The Phasmatodea.com site has some photos of mounted specimens and names of the genus members.


Often red and black coloration is considered aposomatic or warning coloration, and there are Walkingsticks in the family Pseudophasmatidae, that includes Monticomorpha, that are capable of spraying a noxious chemical with amazing accuracy, including the North American Muskmare.

Chilincoco:聽 Walkingstick

December 6, 2011
A comment posted today indicates that this lovely Walkingstick is in the genus
Autolyca and that chances are good it is a species new to science.

January 9, 2014
We just received a comment in Spanish from Leonel who wrote:聽 “En Honduras a este f谩smido se le conocce con el nombre de “chilincoco” y se considera venoso por su secreci贸n.”
If our Spanish isn’t too rusty, we believe this state:聽 In Honduras this phasmid is called by the name “chilincoco” and it is considered venomous because of its secretions.聽 This lends weight to our speculation that like the Muskmare, it can produce a noxious spray.


Location: Honduras

41 Responses to Chilincoco: Walkingstick from Honduras might be new species!!!

  1. this red stick insect belongs to the genus Autolyca (ID by my friend Oskar Conle, who is the main phasmid taxonomist for this region).
    Most probably this is a new species.
    @Medjai – could you please share a more precise location where you found this one. You can contact me on my email adress:

    • bugman says:

      Thanks for the correction on this. This posting is recent enough that we might be able to locate contact information for Medjai.

  2. Medjai says:

    Good day,

    Thank you for your interest and follow-up.

    Seems to me like it’s still an undescribed species also. I found him/her while mowing some brush in a friend’s mountain house, I immediately stopped mowing so i wouldn’t hurt him, also found a few tarantulas in the near surrounding.

    Since you ask for a more precise location, I could post some coordinates here later today? Piliguin mountain is a pine forest reserve just beside La Tigra National Park, located in the heart of Honduras, Central America.

    I’ve subscribed to this thread so I can answer imemdiately from my mobile device.

    Good day to you all.

  3. @ Medjai
    Thanks for the info, now I have an idea where the location is. Are you still there, or would you still have the opportunity to visite this site again?
    If we could get material of this species, then we would describe it (if it is really a new species) – and give it your name. Best would be eggs, so that I can breed them in vivo. If this is of interest to you, the please write to my email adress which is mentioned above. Then I can send you detailed infos on how to collect some eggs.
    Also you would give us permission to post your photos (with your name) on our scientific site on phasmids (www.phasmatodea.com), then you can also send these to my email adress.

    your ID was not totally off, Autolyca and Monticomorpha are quite closely related species – and they look quite similar 馃檪

  4. Medjai says:


    I go there often, I would be interested in helping describe this species.

    I’ll send you the pics and of course you have permission to post them on your site. By the way I checked out phasmatodea.com and found a similar species. (Agathemera > Elegans)

  5. Dear Medjai
    yes are right. The coloration and habitus of the male of A. elegans looks somewhat similar to your Autolyca species. But taxonomically they are rather distantly related, asa they belong to different suborders within the order Phasmatodea. Agathemera are high altitude species from southern America (up to 4000m).
    Also the specimen in your photos is actually a fully grown female specimen. The male will be a bit smaller, maybe only about 6-7 cm.

    So I wait for your email, then I will send you also the details how to collect the eggs.

  6. Hola Medjai
    just in case you have already sent an email with photos of Phasmatodea to me, then it has not arrived here…. Sometimes they get lost in in cyper Nirvana
    Alternatively you can also contact me via Facebook:
    looking forward to hear from you again

  7. AllThingsBugs says:

    Dear Medjai,

    I would love to get some specimens of this insect! Can you please email me at: All.Things.Bugs [at] gmail [dot] com ?

  8. stuart longhorn says:

    I would strongly suggest to first get national collecting permits from the ICF (El Instituto Nacional de Conservaci贸n y Desarrollo Forestal, 脕reas Protegidas y Vida Silvestre), countries like this often dont take kindly to foreigners taking their biodiversity, especially live specimens, without their permission.

  9. Leonel Marineros says:

    En Honduras a este f谩smido se le conocce con el nombre de “chilincoco” y se considera venoso por su secreci贸n.

  10. Jose Antonio says:

    Very nice picture

  11. I have import permits through the Invertebrate Studies Institute. I would love to get eggs of this for research! Please contact me.

  12. Denia Nelson says:

    Chilincocos are very common in Santa Lucia, a town near Tegucigalpa, Piliguin used to be one of its villages. I think almost everybody in Santa Lucia, Valle de Angeles and all the villages that surround the Tigra Mountain have these species.

  13. stuart longhorn says:

    I’ll also add i saw several very similar in the hills around Tegucigalpa, and there’s an entomology collection at the university UNAH, and a massive entomology collection at Zamorano. I suggest anyone interested to get specimens should contact local biologists at those places first ….

  14. melvin cartagena says:

    I live in a mountain within 7 km from Tegucigalpa and I find chilincocos in my house almost every week. I see lots of them arronund here.

  15. A.E. Shaul says:

    I also just took photos of one here in Nicaragua and then found your post here. My photos have GIS info, and I took multiple photos, including habitat where found. I could go back tomorrow to see if we can find any again. Would be interested in finding out about collection, etc.

    I will also upload some of the photos here – I will check to see if I am already a member, and if not, I will join.

  16. Dear A.E. Shaul
    I would also be interested in your photos, which you could send directly to my email adress:
    Bruno Kneubuehler PhD (Switzerland)

  17. Joel V says:

    I’m currently visiting a friends house here on the outskirts of Tegucigalpa, Honduras in a neighborhood called Las Uvas and we found one here. They say they see them quite often. The coloration was almost full black with a light reddish tone in some places.

  18. claudia says:

    I’ve recently found one in la monta帽a de Azacualpa in Francisco Morazan. It had a red coloration and i’ve never seen one before, thanks to this blog!

  19. Ricardo Gonz谩lez Gil says:

    I hace found some individuales of this species in El Hatillo, Tegucigalpa. I have some pictures if you need it and the GPS location. Is it a new species? I would like to know the name .



  20. Ricardo Gonz谩lez Gil says:

    Thanks for the blog and the info!

    • Hola Ricardo
      I’d also be interested in these infos, and I can give you further updates on the description status of this species. You can contact me by email (gopala@bluewin.ch) or FB (www.facebook.com/phasmatodea)

  21. Luis 脕guilar says:

    En el municipio de Santa Ana , cerca de Tegucigalpa tambi茅n son muy comunes , quisiera saber si ya est谩n clasificados en una nueva orden de insectos ?

    • Nichole says:

      Pues estos insectos pertenecen al orden Phasmatodea, de la familia Pseudophasmatidae. Y como dijo el Dr. Conle, es del g茅nero Autolyca. Yo estoy trabajando con determinaci贸n taxon贸mica de los phasmidos de la colecci贸n entomol贸gica de Zamorano, si usted ha visto uno, trate de colectarlo y traigalo a Zamorano si puede. Muchas gracias.

    • Nichole says:

      De la familia Agathemeridae*, perd贸n.


    Also common in Los Encinos, Zarabanda, Santa Luc铆a, Honduras. I see them very often on the walls of the patio. They could be photosensitive. They do not seem to move too quickly and smell poisonous… I have never seen their nests/habitats for egg collection…

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