Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Spicebush swallowtail caterpillar (Papilio troilus), in the Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, Chesapeake, Virginia.

This caterpillar is a convincing miniature mimic of this swamp creature. When disturbed the caterpillar extends a forked organ called an osmeterium from its mouth parts, to further the snaky illusion. It also releases a foul odor to deter predators. You can see video of this behavior by clicking here, including sounds of the choking cough of the filmmaker when the scent is deployed. 

My photo of an adult spicebush swallowtail butterfly can be viewed here. And you can click any photo in this set for enlarged views. 

Notes

  1. ganjabunny420 reblogged this from fatchance
  2. th3-k1ngssssssn4ke reblogged this from fatchance
  3. fatalplague reblogged this from fatchance and added:
    This thing is real. Like, not drawn, it’s REAL. o.O
  4. candykaiju reblogged this from fatchance
  5. ralash-mashulayek reblogged this from fatchance
  6. jolaris reblogged this from staceythinx
  7. zoologyandbotany reblogged this from fatchance
  8. zhouani reblogged this from allcreatures
  9. forestheathen reblogged this from evanv123
  10. ordinaryeffect reblogged this from allcreatures
  11. evanv123 reblogged this from staceythinx
  12. marchesamedici reblogged this from devilmaycreys
  13. joojoobeee reblogged this from allcreatures and added:
    So sick. Reminds me of wrumple!!
  14. noivern-san reblogged this from allcreatures and added:
    Its a Caterpie!!!
  15. multiplicative reblogged this from dendroica
  16. katiescarlet reblogged this from fatchance
  17. louvette reblogged this from somuchscience and added:
    How cute does this one look?! It’s like an animated caterpillar brought to life.
  18. somuchscience reblogged this from dendroica
  19. caffeineculprit reblogged this from hostduraravros
  20. gardenofevum reblogged this from allcreatures
  21. ikkai reblogged this from fatchance
  22. marijuana-rivera reblogged this from allcreatures
  23. therainbowuniverse reblogged this from sassafrasish
  24. voncarabas reblogged this from staceythinx
  25. kinxsonic reblogged this from staceythinx
  26. natzooka reblogged this from hostduraravros and added:
    snakerpillars, fuck yeah.
  27. hostduraravros reblogged this from candymudkipz