Less Than Cuddly and Cute Caterpillars

As a little kid many of us are fascinated by insects. Think of when you were young and wanted to pick up a bright red ladybug or catch fireflies in glass jars. Not all insects immediately make us want to run away or start screaming. Some look downright cute. This is the case with the tussock moth caterpillar. With its fluffy white exterior and tiny size, the little bug looks like it just might make a good pet. And this time of year they seem to be popping up everywhere, tempting young children to see if they’re as soft as they look.

Beware! Looks can be deceiving. This seemingly sweet bug packs a nasty punch. That fluffy white hair it’s covered with is actually a mass of spines containing a nasty venom. It irritates the skin and can cause a nasty rash. When handled, those spikes squirt out a poisonous chemical in self-defense. Unsuspecting people who might initially only get some poison on their hands also tend to put those hands near other, more sensitive areas such as the eyes and mouth. This can lead to a much worse reaction to the poison.

So, play it safe and keep your hands (and children’s hands especially) to yourself. Have you come across one of these tricksters? How bad was your experience?

About smithereenpestmanagement

Smithereen Pest Management provides IPM pest services to residential and commercial clients in Kansas, Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana and Missouri. http://www.smithereen.com/
This entry was posted in Less Than Cuddly & Cute Caterpillars and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s