Keep an eye out for this!!


Joined
Aug 27, 2014
Messages
79
Reaction score
13
http://www.myfoxla.com/story/26437401/florida-scientists-dont-touch-this-bug

TAMPA (FOX 13) -
As far as bugs go, caterpillars are usually pretty tame – except for one.

It's a fat, furry caterpillar that is popping up in trees across Florida, and it's known as the "puss caterpillar," or Megalopyge opercularis.

But whatever you do, do not touch this bug. Stay away from it, scientists say.

Its fur is actually covered in venom. Doctors from the University of Florida say the second you touch this caterpillar you feel instant, intense pain.

The pain is worse than a bee, jellyfish, or scorpion, and it can also cause vomiting and convulsions.

Doctors say be aware of them while working outdoors because they are known to fall out of trees.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Feb 2, 2014
Messages
7,584
Reaction score
3,662
Location
Tarpley Tx
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
These have been in Texas for as long as I can remember. They come in two colors, beige and light green. Here in Texas we call them asps. Their sting is indescribably painfull.
 
Joined
Sep 20, 2012
Messages
5,377
Reaction score
1,796
Hardiness Zone
7a
Country
Poland
It's the first time when I see a furry caterpillar. It looks so funny! But it's also kind of creepy:p I know I wouldn't want to find it in my garden. I'm scared of all weird creatures.
 
Joined
Aug 27, 2014
Messages
79
Reaction score
13
These have been in Texas for as long as I can remember. They come in two colors, beige and light green. Here in Texas we call them asps. Their sting is indescribably painfull.
Wow, is it really the "fur" that stings? I can't even imagine. Do they leave a residue or something?
 
Joined
Aug 7, 2014
Messages
142
Reaction score
22
Location
United States
WebMd says those are all over the southern US. I have never seen one but it says they are here in Missouri too. The moth is beautiful.
 
Joined
Aug 29, 2014
Messages
15
Reaction score
2
Wow. never seen anything like it. Is there a certain are from where it stings? Or can it sting from anywhere?:cautious:
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Feb 2, 2014
Messages
7,584
Reaction score
3,662
Location
Tarpley Tx
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
Wow, is it really the "fur" that stings? I can't even imagine. Do they leave a residue or something?
It is not the fur but invisible spines within the fur that stings. They act like fangs on a snake and when touched inject a poison and usually break off in the skin just like a honey bee's stinger does when he stings you.. If you get hit by one of these things the first thing to do is remove the spine with sticky tape like duct tape or masking tape. Then start gobbling down antihistamines. I have been stung a couple of times by these things and I assure you it is not a pleasant way to spend the afternoon.
 
Joined
Jul 17, 2013
Messages
3,392
Reaction score
941
Yikes, what a horrible furry thing to have, I'm terribly scared of those! Don't even try to touch them, I did once and I deeply regretted it! Never again. Dangerous to have around if there are children present.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Feb 2, 2014
Messages
7,584
Reaction score
3,662
Location
Tarpley Tx
Hardiness Zone
8b
Country
United States
These things move very slowly, like a sloth and are very difficult to see. They are extremely well camoflaged. I haven't seen them in trees but then I don't usually climb around in trees anymore. Mostly you will find them in bushes. Usually on smaller limbs towards the inside of the plant. I have been hit twice and both times on the inside of my arm while pruning the bushes around my parents house when I was a kid. They seem to prefer landscape type bushes as I have never seen one out in the woods. As with any caterpillar Bt will elimanate them quickly so if any of you out there are freaked out over these things and live in the south you know what to do.
 
Joined
Aug 28, 2014
Messages
306
Reaction score
51
Location
Hutch, MN
Hardiness Zone
4b
Eww eww eww. That's so gross. We have hairy caterpillars that will make your skin itch like crazy when you accidentally touch or step on them. However, they are not as hairy/furry as that one on the picture. It looks so creepy!
 
Joined
Aug 16, 2013
Messages
1,606
Reaction score
757
Smiley - omg animated.gif
just the thought of one of those has my heart racing.

So I thank you for the warning as well as reminding me - that although I have been fortunate enough to have only ever encountered one of these once and the " puss caterpillar " is not a common visitor where I live - this is the time of year that we always have to be extra vigilante when tending our gardens - as we too have to be on the lookout for other venomous creatures as well as giant caterpillars that although not quite as dangerous - can still cause a nasty reaction - especially if you are one of those who is allergic to any of them.
 

Pat

Joined
Oct 12, 2012
Messages
1,878
Reaction score
562
Location
Maryland
Country
United States
I have never seen this bug in my area. I live in the Mid-Atlantic part of the states. Everyone that live where these types of bugs live be very careful, now that you have received the heads up here on the forum.
 
Ad

Advertisements

Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Oct 30, 2013
Messages
859
Reaction score
168
Location
Connecticut USA
I have never seen anything like that before but I do live in the northeast. Please be vigilant if they are in an area that you live. Make sure that you have antihistamines available too.
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Top