Stinging Nettle Slug Caterpillar (Cup Moth, Limacodidae)

by Sinobug (itchydogimages) on Flickr.
Pu’er, Yunnan, China

Cup Moth larvae are often highly ornamented and brightly colored. Two main types can be distinguished: larvae armed with rows of protuberances bearing stinging spines called nettle caterpillars, or non-spined forms where the surface of the larvae may by completely smooth, called gelatin or just slug caterpillars. The larvae of this family bear no prolegs on their abdominal segments. The larva attaches itself to the substrate by means of an adhesive ventral surface. The movement is like a slug hence their generic name.

A stinging slug caterpillar (like this one) generally bears warning colouration and stinging hairs. These hairs can inject a venom from poison sacs carried at their base that are used as defensive weapons. Reactions can range from a mild itching to a very painful sting.

Globally, the connection between adult cup moths and their caterpillars remains sketchy. Although many, and increasingly more, of the moths are being identified, their life cycles have not been studied or recorded. This is particularly apparent regionally. As fascinating as these caterpillars are, few can be linked to their night-flying mature forms. Hence, should you be browsing my Flickr set of Limacodid Caterpillars, the majority are generically named and only tentatively identified.

See posts on my tumblr blog, SINOBUG, featuring these magnificent caterpillars HERE.

  1. palmercollection reblogged this from visibility-is-relative
  2. grazygardener reblogged this from gravitationalbeauty
  3. wolves-whales-and-waves reblogged this from gravitationalbeauty
  4. golfwangicedout reblogged this from gravitationalbeauty
  5. parleremoperimmagini reblogged this from gravitationalbeauty
  6. eternallysoulless reblogged this from gravitationalbeauty
  7. gravitationalbeauty reblogged this from sinobug
  8. visibility-is-relative reblogged this from ravenwhimsy
  9. ayynos reblogged this from ravenwhimsy
  10. ravenwhimsy reblogged this from exercicedestyle
  11. exercicedestyle reblogged this from sinobug
  12. zeirna reblogged this from myesoterichappyending
  13. myesoterichappyending reblogged this from what-a-succulent-ass
  14. summer-maiden-tsunami reblogged this from mejamijamoja
  15. mejamijamoja reblogged this from what-a-succulent-ass
  16. what-a-succulent-ass reblogged this from thescienceofreality
  17. marekomurakami reblogged this from sinobug
  18. elmono801 reblogged this from sinobug
  19. rinaminamar reblogged this from fernsandmossvintage
  20. blesstheseweeds reblogged this from herbgardening
  21. snappyk reblogged this from bunnyjunk
  22. bunnyjunk reblogged this from thescienceofreality
  23. tentacles-for-no-reason reblogged this from pyranova
  24. fornoes reblogged this from sinobug
  25. ah-thenah reblogged this from thescienceofreality
  26. skylemur reblogged this from norcalkyle
  27. d3pr3553d63m1n1 reblogged this from thescienceofreality
Blog comments powered by Disqus