Orgyia detrita, 18 March 2023

Orgyia detrita, the Fir tussock moth;
Volusia county, Florida (18 March 2023).

March is Fir Tussock Month in my world. Each March (and early April), Fir tussock moth caterpillars emerge for their slow-motion flashdance across our screens, walls, and shrubs. Flashy, colorful, and fairly furry, they’re quite a sight to behold. It’s best not to pick them up, however. Though not particular dangerous. contact with their hairs can cause dermatitis. Apparently, this can be quite irritating for some people. As for myself, I’ve never taken a hit from them, despite unintentionally making contact with them twice.

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