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Photo#178359
Caterpillar with wings - Anisota

Caterpillar with wings - Anisota
Jacksonville, Duval County, Florida, USA
April 21, 2008
Size: 2 inches
I ran across this colorfull little caterpillar the other day and have never seen anything like it. I would like someone to id it.

Thanks for the input
I would like to thank all who took time to place a comment about this malformed creature.

ha
It's a funky transitional form between the larva and adult... haha I'm sure natural selection won't favor this one though. lol

Eclosion gone horribly wrong.
Well, it is a moth now, but barely! A female silkmoth (Saturniidae) of some kind. Her wings never fully 'inflated,' leaving her in this awful condition.

 
Hmmmm...
First step towards Sausage Fly mimicry (sorry couldn't resist)

 
Not a good idea to mimic XD
Other insects and spiders love to eat sausage flies. XD
lol

 
I've seen this..
happen to emerging cicadas. If they fall from their shell after emergence and damage the uninflated wings, then they never fully develop. Usually they cicada falls easy victim to predators, if it survives.

 
Poor thing
It's a doomed moth. This is a species of Anisota. I've seen something similar in other Anisota, however the wings fully expanded but the abdomen was incredibly swollen and extended as on this specimen, and the legs were underdeveloped. I'm not sure what causes it though. It would be very interesting to find out.

 
Homrones?
Could hormones have anything to do with this?

 
Really not sure
I've heard several suggestions posited as the cause; genetic flaw, chemical pesticides (they pupate in the ground), unusual temperature fluctuations, potential parasitic involvement, etc. I'm honestly not sure at all what it could be and I haven't come across any published works that discuss it (not that I've looked much). But I don't believe it's inordinately common or anything.

-
Bill....whatever it is .....IT'S COOL!!
Can't wait to see the ID!!
Thanks for adding it.

 
oops
Well, now I feel bad for saying it was "cool"!
I'd like to change it to "interesting".

 
It looks like.....
a moth with under developed wings.

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