Habitat: South America
Status: Not Evaluated
These caterpillars of the genus Arsenura are probably some of the weirdest caterpillars I’ve seen in a while (I know, I always say that… but I just keep topping myself!!). These caterpillars in the photos above are, I believe, different species from one another, though all of them are definitely within the genus Arsenura. They might even be instars of the same species… honestly, I have no idea.
I just know that they are really, really, weird-looking. I believe that the projections on the caterpillars are to mimic a fungal infection because, after all, what predator wants to eat a meal laden with a very unpalatable fungus? Come to think of it, it might even be mimicking a Ophiocordyceps fungi…you know, the type that turns ants into living, breathing zombies? Ya, if they’re mimicking fungus then they definitely are weird caterpillars alright. “Look Ma! I’m Fungi!”