Sunday, December 30, 2012

Predatory Hawaiian Caterpillar

Latin Name: Eupithecia orichloris

Another bizarre creature from the archipelago of Hawaii, the Predatory Hawaiian Caterpillar is one of the world's only meat-eating caterpillars discovered. Why did this insect evolve from a leaf-munching bug to a killer predator? Simply because Hawaii lacked enough predatory insects like the praying mantis, so this inchworm took the opportunity to adapt and go up in the food chain.

Eupithecia orichloris

The Predatory Hawaiian Caterpillar uses its long, thin appendages on its abdomen like sensory organs to catch prey. When an unsuspecting snail or fly touches one of these appendages, this caterpillar bends back and grabs its victim with its claws. From there, the snail or fly or whatever falls in the caterpillar's clutches is doomed to become snack food.


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