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Sunday, 24 June 2012

Colourful caterpillars


The humid sub-tropical climate and rich biodiversity in Hong Kong provides an ideal environment for insects. 


  The abundant food resources have enabled not only the butterflies and moths but also their caterpillars to produce large sized species. This pretty giant caterpillar is the Larva of the Death's-head Hawkmoth.



It is about 10cm long and as thick as a human finger. 



Its jaws (Mandibles) are sharp and strong too. This giant can even bite if threatened.




The Larva of Black-veined Burnet Moth may be small by comparison but makes up for it with pretty colours. 






The patterns on the Common Mime swallowtail butterfly Larva look very artistic to me. 



These bright colours may stand out in the feeding environment but to their predators they are warning signs of “poisonous and stay away”.   

This hairy caterpillar (Larva of Staff Sergeant butterfly) has a well camouflaged colour and still manages to look beautiful.  



The defense system of this Common Mormon swallowtail butterfly Larva is not only unique but also looks cute. 


In addition to the big eyespots, it has two pretty “horns” (Osmeterium), which only come out when threatened (by my camera in this case), and also produces smelly chemicals to repel predators.  








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17 comments:

Giga said...

Gąsienice są śliczne, kolorowe, ale wolę motyle. Wspaniałe zdjęcia.Pozdrawiam.
Caterpillars are beautiful, colorful, but I prefer butterflies. Great pictures. Yours.

eileeninmd said...

Awesome photos and post. Well done!

Breathtaking said...

What a lovely selection of colourful and beautifully patterned caterpillars.Great photographs!!

Digi-Irma said...

Beautiful macro pictures.
Greetings Irma

Magia da Inês said...

Não tenho medo de lagartas e as acho bonitas... a pesar de algumas serem venenosas... elas sempre se transformam em lindas borboletas.
Uma vez assisti uma borboleta Monarca saindo do casulo... milagre da natureza!...
Boa semana!
Beijinhos.
Brasil.
¸¸.º°❤♫♫♪¸¸.°
°º✿⊱╮

Urban Rundström said...

Hi!
Very fine pictures of this amasing caterpillars. /Urban

Cindy said...

Hong Kong must be an amazing source of wildlife, or else you are a very observant & patient photographer.. I suspect both! Your posts are always stunning!

Ari said...

The colors are food for the eye and the mind.

birdy said...

Amazing!
The caterpillars can be that colorful and beautiful, I can't imagine.

Askartelin itte said...

Todella kauniita makro kuvia toukista:)Erikoisia toukkia.

Helma said...

Hello Friend of HK,

I'm glad you have visited my blog. I see really great pictures of butterflies and also those of many caterpillars. What a prachtgie colors, these caterpillars. Very beautiful macro, beautiful color and pretty sharp. Compliment.

Greetings Helma

Jeremy Pearse said...

Another wonderful series of butterfly photos! I have a special place in my heart for HK butterflies and moths so please keep the photos coming. I especially love the White Dragontail and while rare as you mentioned, is always a delight to see. I had a lot of enjoyment raising some of these species many years ago (on Lamma) and when they hatched, seeing them float gracefully away was always a joyful and rewarding experience!

Ayuwat Jearwattanakanok said...

Never seen quite fascinating caterpillars like the second and the last one before. The second seems poisonous judging from its glowing red lights.

Bob Bushell said...

You said it, colourful caterpillars. Superb photos.

Marco Alpha said...

Hello,
Fantastic shots!!
Great to see these beautiful colored caterpillars. Really amazing!!

Greetings, Marco

Lindsjö taxar said...

Great macro shoots! Very beautiful colours they have. Very nice!

- Yvonaut -
Das sind Raphael und Yvonne
said...

Wow! These guys are crazy!
Sooo beautiful!
Have a nice week!
Yvonne & Raphael