Orange Dog reveals Osmetrium

Location: augusta, Ga
May 5, 2011 7:04 am
came out the house this morning and at first thought it a bird had poo on my orange tree till i moved the leaf and it stuch its 1 in long tongues at me not sure if they were forked did see where they came together.
Signature: kristina

blurry photo of an Orange Dog

we wish your photos were in focus.  The Orange Dog is the caterpillar of the beautiful Giant Swallowtail butterfly.

i took more this morning of it this morning.

Ed. Note: Reshoot
As instructors of photography, it is imperative that we instruct our students how to properly focus their images.  Unless soft focus is used creatively and consciously, students who create blurry images cannot receive an excellent grade on their assignments, and we generally recommend a reshoot.  We were very impressed that Kristina made the effort to reshoot her images of an Orange Dog, prompting us to post both the original and the subsequent images.  When it comes to educating photographers, we reward attempts to make better images even if the reshoot is not entirely successful by adding a few points, but nothing is more rewarding than seeing a major improvement when a student reshoots an assignment.  With that in mind, we are now posting Kristina’s efforts as well as elaborating on our original very short response to her.

Orange Dog

Hello again Kristina,
These new images are a vast improvement over your original attempts, and we applaud the initiative you took.  Your new and critically sharp images show a “content” Orange Dog as well as the very effective defense mechanism utilized when that Orange Dog is threatened.  The red forked organ is known as an Osmetrium and when the disturbed, the Orange Dog, like its many closely related Swallowtail Caterpillar relatives, obtrudes the Osmetrium which in turn emits a foul odor.  The Osmetrium is a defense organ and the foul odor that is released is believed to ward off birds and other predators that would otherwise find the caterpillar to be a tasty morsel.  The red or orange color of the Osmetrium is most likely also a visual deterrent.

Orange Dog Obtrudes Osmetrium

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