Some people consider caterpillars to be extremely cute tiny creatures, while someone else is terrified of them. However, few know how amazing and beautiful the caterpillar world really is.
These larvae go through one of the most incredible transformation processes in the wildlife world, communicate with the most unexpected parts of the body and are able to exude nicotine fumes!
Caterpillars are butterfly larvae . Body sizes from a few millimeters to 12 cm. The caterpillars are characterized by a paired silk-releasing gland, which opens by a duct on the lower lip. The secret she secrets in contact with air forms a silk thread used to build a cocoon. Throughout life, the caterpillar eats intensively, storing nutrients for subsequent development. The caterpillar stage can last from several weeks to several years. Learn the interesting facts about caterpillars …
Interesting Caterpillar Facts
1. Caterpillars are amazing insects.
Many people think that these are ordinary worms that crawl through trees. Only entomologists who study them know everything about caterpillars. They claim that caterpillars are amazing creatures of nature.
2. There are many different types of them, and almost all of them turn into beautiful and graceful butterflies, which are the decoration of our life.
3. Depending on the species, the butterfly larva can transform into a flying beauty from several weeks to several years.
4. Caterpillars that live in the northern latitudes do not have time to go through the entire development cycle in one season, so their life cycle can last two years: they remain to winter in cocoons. It is interesting that in this state the caterpillar is able to withstand frost up to -70 degrees.
5. In Canada and Greenland, there are caterpillars that live until they turn into a butterfly before the age of 14, because they do not have time to develop in a short summer, and they have to hibernate for the winter.
6. Unlike worms with which they are constantly compared, caterpillars are not an independent group of animals. These are insect larvae - one of the forms of development of Lepidoptera, or butterflies.
7.During its development, the larva changes in size and appearance: from an ugly and naked larva, it turns into a fluffy caterpillar. Then the caterpillar turns into a chrysalis, from which then a beautiful butterfly appears.
8. The dimensions of the smallest tracks do not exceed 2 millimeters, and for the largest they reach 12 centimeters.
9. Caterpillars are rarely found in cold polar regions, lifeless deserts and bald highlands. There are not too many of them in temperate latitudes, but the tropics have the greatest variety of species.
10. There are also many species of caterpillars, as well as species of butterflies and other lepidopterans. To determine the type of caterpillars, first of all, attention should be paid to color, size, number of legs, length of hairs and other traits specific to each type.
11. The caterpillar of the cabbage butterfly grows to 3-4 centimeters. It has a yellow-green color with black spots on the back and long white hairs.
12. The body of the tracks has a head, chest and abdomen. There are several pairs of limbs on the chest and abdomen. The entire body of the caterpillar is covered with hairs, scales, warts and other protrusions. The body of the tracks also has several rings separated by grooves. Pulling the rings, the caterpillar moves and moves the legs.
13. The caterpillars breathe through stigma. There are several on the body. The head and chest have a hard shell. The rest of the body is soft, loose.
14. The head is formed of several rings fused together. The shape of the head can be round, rectangular, core. The parietal parts can protrude forward and even form “horns”. Some species of caterpillars possess real imitation of other inhabitants of the Earth, for example, snakes and even fairy-tale dragons.
15. The oral apparatus of the tracks is highly developed. They can gnaw any materials and get their own food with the help of external jaws. Inside is a chewing apparatus with salivary glands.
16. The eyes of the caterpillars have a simple structure. There are several pairs of eyes on the head. Sometimes they are merged into one big eye.
17. Each caterpillar has several pairs of legs, some of which end with specific hooks. On the legs, which are located on the chest, there is a sole with a claw. With its help, the insect moves, protruding or retracting the stomach.
18. Caterpillar large harpy reaches a size of 6cm, has a green color. There is a purple spot on the back. Around the head is a pink “frame”. The limbs and horns on the body are striped black and white. When protecting, it releases a caustic substance.
19. Some species of caterpillars live in anthills, making special sounds and secreting enzymes. Ants think that the caterpillar is their uterus, so they feed it and take care of it.
20. Some caterpillars become toxic due to the plants they eat. Therefore, the birds do not eat them, knowing that they are poisonous.
21. Any caterpillar can produce silk, but only a silkworm was domesticated by man several centuries ago.
22.This caterpillar is called a silkworm. She has a white color with many blue warts. At the end of the cycle, it changes color to yellow.
23. The caterpillar develops and lives for about a month. Pupilizing, she spins a cocoon of threads up to 1,500 meters long. Color can be white, pink, yellow, green.
24.To get natural silk, the pupa is kept for two hours at a temperature of 100 C. This temperature makes it easier to unwind the cocoon and use silk in production.
25. Mulberry silkworm caterpillar is specially bred in many countries. From 100 kg of cocoons, 9 kilograms of silk thread is obtained.
26. The caterpillar of the peacock-eye is the largest representative. It grows up to 12 centimeters, has a bluish-green color. Throughout the body, instead of hairs, there are outgrowths in the form of horns.
27. Touching some tracks is life threatening. They are poisonous. To distinguish a poisonous caterpillar from a "peaceful" one allows coloring. The brighter the color, the more likely the caterpillar is poisonous. Contact with it for a person can cause a tooth, redness of the skin, shortness of breath, various pains and develop diseases.
28. Caterpillar coquette lives in Mexico. She is very similar to a hamster. Fluffy brown beauty 2-3 centimeters long. Contact with her may cause chest pain, shortness of breath.
29. The saddle caterpillar has a bright color: the back is poisonously green and has a large brown spot in the middle. The head and end of the abdomen are brown with thick horns. There are hard hairs on the body. At the ends of these hairs there is strong poison.
30. Caterpillar lazy cleaver lives in Uruguay and Mozambique. It is small in length, only 3-4 centimeters. It has a black and white color with green tufts of hard hairs of milky green color. Its poison can disrupt the nervous system, cause bleeding of internal organs.
31. In the caterpillar of a burning rose, the main color is yellow, but it has red and blue stripes. Her thick horns have spikes with poison. Upon contact, the spikes break off, and a rash appears on the skin.
32. The caterpillar surveyor looks like a thin brown twig. The limbs are not developed, moves "loops".
33. The limited mobility of the caterpillar does not allow them to move quickly and change their habitat. Most often, caterpillars live on the ground, leaflets, plants. Some species live underwater.
34. Depending on the lifestyle, secretive caterpillars and openly moving ones are secreted. Hidden species include those who practically do not appear on the surface of the earth, but are located in the crust, underground.
35. Depending on where they live, the caterpillars are divided into the following representatives: Leafworms live in the leaves of trees, making a tubular house. Karpofagi live in the fruits of plants, berries. Xylophages live inside tree trunks, under the bark. Underground larvae live underground. Water caterpillars live in water bodies. Minerals live in roots, leaves, and kidneys.
36. Future butterflies lead an open lifestyle. They live where they eat: on the leaves of flowers, plants.
37. Mostly caterpillars are vegetarians. They prefer plant leaves, roots, flowers. Some make their way to their treats and lay eggs there. Such pests include moth. She loves honey. At night, the mole sneaks into the hive and lays eggs in the comb. Hatched larvae eat wax and honey.
38. In general, the caterpillar is very gluttonous. To become a doll, she must gain mass. The apple moth caterpillar can eat all the leaves on the apple tree and not “eat up”. If there are no other trees nearby, she pupates even when she is "hungry."
39. There is also an exotic diet depending on the type: Cork moth eats algae and fungus in wine barrels and vats with beer. Caterpillars of the ognevka live on the body of a sloth and eat its algae, which grow on wool. Ognevki eat the building material of ants - paper. The caterpillars of the scoop and Lycaenidae eat ants, while the ants love the juice that it produces, and live together.
40. Predatory caterpillars feed on small insects and other caterpillars. Predatory species of caterpillars are used in pest control in gardens, but herbivores can cause damage to the economy.
41. In Peru, unique caterpillars live, whose habits resemble hermit crab. They find suitable objects, like a dry sheet twisted into a tube, and use them as a shell for their protection.
42. Immediately after hatching from an egg, the caterpillar begins to actively gain weight by eating everything that is fit for it in food, and in a few days its weight increases tenfold.
43. As the caterpillars grow, they molt several times, discarding the old, which has become a tight shell, and growing a new one.
44. There are 4,000 muscles in the body of the caterpillar. For comparison, a person has only 629 of them. The muscles of the caterpillars, unlike the human muscles, perform the function of a skeleton for their body. They look like small balls with air, through which blood circulates through the interlacing of muscles.
45. Since ancient times, entomophagy or eating insects has flourished on Earth. Caterpillars take pride of place among gourmets. They are eaten raw, dried, fried, with sauces, omelettes.
46. The color of any caterpillar imitates the living conditions of this insect. This is an excellent disguise and protection tool.
47. All types of caterpillars pass through the pupation stage before turning into a butterfly. The pupa usually has a cylindrical or round shape. The color of the cylinder is plain - green or light green. May have a surface pattern in the form of stripes, dots or spots. When the butterfly is in the pupal stage, it already has wings, legs and proboscis.
48. Most caterpillars live much longer than the butterfly, which they then turn into.
49. Lepidoptera insects are common throughout the planet, but only in places where there is flowering vegetation.
50. Caterpillars - insect larvae crawling like worms. They come in completely different sizes and colors, can be bare or covered with fluffy hairs. One thing unites them - they all someday turn into beautiful butterflies. (Read Interesting facts about Butterfly)