What is this?
Are you asking yourself that question?
I didn't know either, until I looked it up on the internet.
I love the internet! Beats any encyclopedia set, hands down!
I found this little guy crawling on my dining room table this afternoon.
He came in with a basketful of leaves I had collected earlier... an art project to be... the leaves, not this furry critter.
I did a search on "furry caterpillar." Nickname happens to be the Tribble caterpillar, or the Puss Caterpillar. You can see why.
I knew better than to touch the little guy (or gal, who can tell?)
Generally, I have found, that when a critter looks very unusual compared to other critters in the same family, like it's more colorful, has more striking features, or is unusually bright red or furry, it could very well sting you. That's been my experience... so don't touch these amazing little critters that look as cute as a kitten!
Even if it looks as cute as a Tribble. But it isn't a Tribble. It's a Megalopyge Opercularis. That's the scientific name for the Southern Flannel Moth. Apparently they are pretty common around here in the south and east. I didn't know that, since I've never seen one before. I read that their sting is very painful.
Well, you know me... I took care of a polyphemus caterpillar two years ago... for six months, and it emerged a beautiful Giant silkworm moth. I took the Tribble critter and put him in an insect cage to take to school... maybe it will cocoon like my last one did. I'll keep you posted. I don't know a thing about this critter, but as with the Polyphemus, I will learn as I go.
I do have a fondness for Tribbles...er, at least, a fondness for Star Trek. Here is a YouTube video about the time Captain Kirk discovered what was wreaking havoc on his ship. This is my first blogspot video post, so I'm holding my breath as I hit the publish button.