The Bug Geek

Insects. Doing Science. Other awesome, geeky stuff.

Party hats on, please!

It’s my birthday!

I’m 34.

Thirty. Four.  (And still in school, lulz!)

This fun-loving fella is helping me celebrate by wearing his party hat today! 😀

Harris' Three-Spot (Harrisimemna trisignata)

Harris’ Three-Spot (Harrisimemna trisignata)

Seriously, is that not one wild outfit?

The Harris’ Three-Spot caterpillar is a crazy-looking critter.  What I first mistook for a discoloured leaf,  closer inspection revealed to be a caterpillar. Then I thought it was a diseased caterpillar, though, because its shape was all gnarly and twisted and it had a weird white band around the middle (which I mistook for a fuzzy fungus).

Not terrifically healthy-looking, amirite?

Not terrifically healthy-looking, amirite?

But then I poked it (I can’t help myself) and realized that it was NOT diseased; rather, it was quite healthy and also TREMENDOUSLY COOL (though possibly the ugliest caterpillar I’ve ever seen).  Yes, folks, we have another poop-mimic!

Not only is it a poop-mimic, but it is also a poop-mimic that carries around its own molted head capsules! What is this for? What does it do? Presumably it offers some kind of defense – a decoy, perhaps?  We don’t know, really. But we do know they can get a little carried away with this stunt at times.

OH! And also, when you poke it, it does a crazy twist-n-shout kind of wobbly smacking-thrashing that is something to behold.  Mine never cooperated when I had the camera rolling, but The Weird Bug Lady (over at Caterpillar Blog)  managed to catch one in the act.

I’m going to treat myself to a nice long walk in the bush today to see what other weird and wonderful bits of nature I can find 🙂

(Ok, maybe kind of neat-looking. In an ugly sort of way. :P)

Ok, maybe kind of neat-looking. In an ugly sort of way. 😛

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6 responses to “Party hats on, please!

  1. smccann27 September 19, 2013 at 8:29 AM

    I always celebrate with a walk in the bush! Nice ugly caterpillar. And happy birthday!

  2. dragonflywoman September 19, 2013 at 12:42 PM

    Happy birthday!! Hope you get to spend some great time outdoors exploring.

  3. Ted C. MacRae September 19, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    HB BG! if you think your getting old, just remember that I had my first legal beer at the time of your conception!

  4. Scott Hogsten September 29, 2013 at 10:19 PM

    Happy belated birthday and super cool picture. I was driving by the time you were born.

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