Subject: Blue Monster
Location: East central Alabama
August 17, 2015 10:56 am
I was hiking last weekend near a small stream and saw this heart shaped leaf. Upon looking closer, I noticed a very small blue bug that appeared to look like the monster in Little Shop of Horrors. It had a large mouth and spiky barbs surrounding its body. Any thoughts?
This is a Tortoise Beetle Larva, and we think chances are very good that it is a Golden Tortoise Beetle larva, Charidotella sexpunctata, based on this BugGuide image. According to BugGuide, they feed on “leaves of various Convolvulaceae” the family that includes morning glories, and many species have heart shaped leaves. The spiny larva of many Tortoise Beetles produce a fecal shell of droppings that acts as camouflage or protection.
I appreciate the response. I’m 47 and have read many sci fi books. I didn’t know if this was a bug I didn’t recognize or if I needed to contact the CDC.