A Couple Critters

There always seems to be something new and interesting around here. I never promised to stop with the bugs and critters, so here are a couple new ones.

One night this bug showed up in our outside laundry/storage room. It was one of the biggest bugs I’d seen! It was very shy though and ran behind the air compressor so I was lucky to get this photo. You can see probably less than half of it peeking out from under the air hose.


A wild orchid started growing in one of the orange trees, and I noticed it had some flowers. They aren’t anything spectacular but I think they are pretty and sweet.


This critter is one of the most interesting I have come across in a while. I saw this very furry caterpillar munching on my bijao leaves. (those big leaf clumps of plants that are used for the outer wrappings of tamales). I think I have identified it – the puss caterpillar (because it’s furry like a cat), or the tree asp, or the asp caterpillar, or my favorite, the Trump caterpillar 😀 In its adult form it is the very pretty Southern Flannel Moth. But, this caterpillar is a very bad guy. There are stingers hiding in that fur which will cause intense pain that lasts for hours. The pain may radiate up the limb and cause nausea, swelling, headache, and a number of other effects that land some people in the hospital. If you want to know more, google puss caterpillar or here is a Wikipedia article on Megalopyge Opercularis, it’s scientific name.

Never touch anything! I’ll look, take photos, and in this case even nudge with a stick to be sure it was something living (since it wasn’t moving at all when I found it), but no touching, no walking in the yard barefoot, no putting fingers or hands in somewhere you can’t see, no putting on clothes or shoes without shaking them out first…. you get the general idea. We share our world here with some very interesting, beautiful, fascinating, and also dangerous wildlife. I love it and wouldn’t trade it for anything, but some common sense precautions are necessary to live together peacefully. Thankfully (knock on wood) in the 3+ years I have lived here I haven’t had any significant problems with anything, which is more than I could say for my years in Florida.


About Kris Cunningham

We live in David, Chiriqui Provence, Republic of Panama! This blog is about some of our experiences in our new country.
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7 Responses to A Couple Critters

  1. Sunni Morris says:

    I think it pays to have common sense and be smart about touching unknown things and walking around outside barefoot, etc. This goes for anywhere you live. Small critters can crawl into places and hide. We have scorpions here and some not-so-nice spiders that it pays to be wary of. We’ve learned to never stick our hands into places we can’t see. This goes for gloves and shoes, etc. as well, not just boxes and things.


  2. Cool little critters!


  3. I personally like the name “Trump Critter”!


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