Thursday, February 10, 2011


I thought I had seen every kind of bug and insect there is in Thailand , BUTTTT !!!!! Ciejay opened the back door and let out a blood curdling scream and I thought we had ourselves another Cobra trying to get into our house this time , I ran an at first look i thought the dogs had bitten a snake in half and left the front half for us to see , I could see eyes and ears and what looked like a mouth, upon closer ---buttt careful examination I saw that it was some kind of caterpillar or something , to me it looked like a Tiger worm , It was something out of the twilight zone as far as I was concerned for a moment. I touched it with the broom and it straightened out like it wanted to crawl away, but when it never did I so carefully got it on the broom and took it out in the field behind the house to let it go , could not bring myself to kill it , it looked like a little animal instead of a worm.
Have you ever seen something like this? I tried to look it up on the net and could not find it. If you have a name for it and what it looks like when it becomes.
I found this on the net with John'a help thanks again John Malcolm
Elephant Hawk Moth Caterpillar
The species is found throughout Britain and Ireland except for the north and east of Scotland, and its range extends across Europe, Russia, and into China, northern parts of the Indian subcontinent, Japan and Korea (though not Taiwan). Introduced specimens have been found in British Columbia. In most of their range, the adults are seen from May to July and the caterpillars from July to September, when they pupate. However in some parts of the Mediterranean and China the adults may be seen from April on, sometimes having two broods in a year.
Caterpillar in "elephant" pose
Caterpillar in "snake" pose
The larva is about 75mm long, green and brown in colour. Like most hawk moth caterpillars, they have a backward curving spine or "horn" on the final abdominal segment. The anterior of the caterpillar appears to have the shape of a trunk-like snout. It is this elephant look, rather than its large size, that gives the moth its name. When startled, the caterpillar draws its trunk into its foremost body segment. This posture resembles a snake with a large head and four large eye-like patches. Caterpillars are preyed upon by birds, but these shy away (at least for some time) from caterpillars in "snake" pose. It is not known whether the birds take the caterpillar to actually resemble a snake, or are frightened by the sudden change of a familiar prey item into an unusual and boldly-patterned shape (Stevens 2005).

The preferred food plants of the caterpillar are willowherb and bedstraw, though it will also take fuchsias.
The imago (adult) tends to feed in the evening, and often takes nectar from garden plants like honeysuckles and petunias, so it is quite often seen in urban settings. The moth has a wing span typically between 50 and 70 mm. It is spectacularly coloured, seeming to shimmer with green and red when in motion. The adult moths are eaten by some species of bats.
Two subspecies, Deilephila elpenor elpenor and Deilephila elpenor lewisii, were recognised in the past, but they are no longer regarded as well distinguished. Similarly the subspecies Deilephila elpenor szechuana is now thought to be a synonym for Deilephila elpenor elpenor. The subspecies Deilephila elpenor macromera, found in southern China, northern India, Bhutan and Myanmar, is still regarded as distinct.
The related species, the Small Elephant Hawk-moth (Deilephila porcellus) and Chitral Elephant Hawk-moth (Deilephila rivularis) are similar but smaller and less colourful.(Wikipedia)

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