lunedì 2 gennaio 2017

A blue eyed caterpillar!

Daphnis nerii caterpillar, picture by Amy Huang from Taiwan
Daphnis nerii caterpillar has a big (fake) blue eye on his front side. What a finesse, for a moth of the family Sphingidae, so often nocturnal and disquieting! When looking for identification across the web, the other caterpillar I had found with a blue eye very similar, was actually that of Papilio glaucus, from the noblest and most beautiful family of butterflies! It's a great example of animal mimicry, as another Papilio testifies, whose pictures I received (to tell all the truth, it's another sub-species), as coming directly from Chinese and Japanese paintings, which, with two orange (fake) eyes in its form of caterpillar, from a frontal point of view just looks like a snake! Curious, and amazing!
Now, for the Children's Virtual Museum of Small Animals many pictures are coming from the extreme East Asia, as well as from South America, where now we know that very similar spiders tend their large, fascinating webs. Argiope is genus name.

Argiope aemula, by Emma-Huang, Taiwan
I have books about insects and spiders, very useful but, as a self made naturalist apprentice, it is great for me, surfing the other web, the “world wide” one, to be able many times to give right answers in few minutes to questions about animals living so far in the world, just recalling some elements of my experience and knowledge and writing some keywords. Amazing!
Papilio bianor dehaanii, picture by Cindea Hung from Japan
Argiope argentata, by Manuela, Colombia
Sometime, they are the children who draw the right guide lines to understand natural world. It was in primary school, first class, where, looking and wondering at the details of the magnified pictures of the insects, the kids at some point said: “So, bees suck and wasps cut!They had identified as significant the tongue of bees and the jaws of wasps, just the same distinction made by the scientists, when dividing superfamily Apoidea from Vespoidea!

Trigonopsis sp., picture by Cindea Hung from Taiwan
Some time later, taking very close pictures of the so called “digger waspson flowers, I noticed their long and winding tongue, almost like butterflies! But, if wasps cut, so then they must be bees!
And anyone can actually look up and verify that the family Sphecidae belongs to the Apoidea!
Among the pictures of by my friend Cindea, from Taiwan, the one I have chosen for this post is not the closest to the insect, but it is a really great frame, isn't it?

1 commento:

  1. Hi, Paolo
    First, I appreciated that my first picture (Argiope aemula) would be posted by you. And it was happy for me to know not only the insect in my garden but also the similar one from the other countries. Actually, I also have some photos about stinkbugs (Pentatomoidea) in my organic garden, share with you all later, haha.