If You Ever See This Bug, Run The Other Way

Published September 27th, 2019

Humans love the fluffy and cuddly. Cats. Dogs. Guinea pigs. And it's no surprise that many children and adults cannot resist the urge to pick up a fuzzy caterpillar to examine it. Especially a fuzzy one that resembles a curled-up, sleeping kitty.

This caterpillar, however, only looks warm and fuzzy.

The puss caterpillar is covered with a fine, wispy fur that makes them all too cute. Scientists warn, however, that these little creatures are best left alone. The puss caterpillar is only warm and fuzzy from a distance.

The "fur" on the spines of these caterpillars, should you encounter one, will make you swear off any future furballs you may encounter. These caterpillars are actually venomous.

Scientists have stated that the venom carried by puss caterpillars is beyond that of a jellyfish or scorpion sting. Anyone who makes contact with one of these unfriendly furries can expect to experience a range of unpleasant symptoms that include nausea, vomiting, and swelling. Victims can also expect to experience a variety of rashes, swelling and numbness, as well as chest pain or difficulty breathing.

The puss caterpillar is typically found in the southern United States. They are native to Florida, Mexico, and South America. Puss caterpillars are masters of disguise. Their grey, white, brown, and/or green coloring often grant them camouflage.

It is recommended that anyone who comes into contact with one of these caterpillars to seek immediate medical attention.