Tuesday, January 30, 2018

From the inbox - mystery caterpillar

The lab of Walter Carson at the University of Pittsburgh, with the help of Lee Dyer, is currently working on a publication documenting the outbreak of an unknown Lepidoptera in Tena, Ecuador. We are offering co-authorship to anyone that is able to identify this Lepidoptera to family or genus.

The caterpillars, which have aposematic mimicry and non-urticating spines, had completely defoliated an Inga edulisA flock of oropendola was feeding on them and some indigenous women collected them to eat.  The caterpillar is called tupuli kuru in Quichua. Pictures can be accessed through the dropbox link. If you have any questions or can refer anyone to us please contact Samantha Sutton, our undergraduate researcher.

Here some images:

We could barcode it to see if it matches an already collected and identified adult.

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