Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Fuzzy Caterpillar

If fuzzy caterpillars were the size of a dog or a cat or a rabbit, people would want them as furry companions. They are really cute! But of course, no wants their beloved pet to hide in a cocoon for a couple of weeks, then the second they emerge, fly away.

The largest caterpillar is pretty darn big as a hand. They are not fuzzy though. The largest caterpillar is the Hickory Horned Devil. It sounds like a scary creature! It sounds like an animal of legend, a cryptozoological creature not promised to exist. But it does exist and it is not a creature lurking in the night, menacing humanity, it's a green caterpillar with a crown of horns. Usually large insects are found in places like the Amazon forest, but the largest caterpillar is found in North America, in the American South or New England. It eventually turns into the Regal Moth.

 This caterpillar that I found is a Seattle caterpillar. I can't find what type though.... just a little orange fuzzy fellow that turns into some winged creature. These pictures are from a while ago, so this caterpillar has already built a cocoon. He's already emerged and transformed into a fluttering moth or butterfly. He's already made children that can live when he is gone. He has already gone, leaving behind his little external skeleton of a body. Maybe someone found it and thought, 'Oh how lovely!' and brought it home to sit next to their other natural curiosities. He's on a shelf nestled between a seashell and a feather. Wherever he is, he is an ancestor now. All the other moths or butterflies he helped create live in his stead, fluttering around the flowers or toward a light and blending in with all the specks soaring across the pale blue sky. 

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