Wednesday 12 September 2012

Lots of creepy crawlies...

Yesterday, Ebi-kun and I went outside to play for a bit after school. I noticed that our next door neighbours cherry blossom tree was looking a bit shabby, on closer inspection I discovered these...

The tree is dripping with hairy caterpillars. I am very cautious about these little critters after a friend had some in her garden, the hairs got into the laundry and she ended up having to get medicine from the doctor to help with rash that resulted from wearing the clothes that the hairs had gotten on to.

I have never seen so many caterpillars in one place, I am both in awe and revolted at the same time! We decide to catch a couple - using a long stick and a bug box, so we could investigate further. After much research we think that they are モンクロシャチホコ. I have no idea what that is in English but it is a type of moth.

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  1. Our cherry blossom gets attacked by these awful creatures every year too. The leaves are all ruined. I was once stung by one and it was incredibly painful. I simply brushed past it but felt the sting straight away. My whole arm went numb and ached for hours. Steer clear! We sprayed this year actually but it was too late.

    1. must admit, after living here I have gone off the caterpillars are cute thing!

  2. Nooooo!! I got all itchy just looking at the pictures. My son Shidora said that the kids are not allowed to play in certain spots in the schoolyard because there are too many of them >_<

  3. Kemushi - for obvious reasons, number one being they have shitloads of Ke, hair. The cherry blossom tree at Shou's kinder has a huge sheet covering the sandpit underneath it because it is getting sprayed tomorrow. We have one cherry blossom tree in the garden but it doesn't seem to get too hammered.

  4. I think all hairy catterpillars are called kemushi and these ones are Amerikashirohitori or fall webworm. Definitely tell your neighbour. I have yet to live in a place that doesn't have a city ordinance out against these. (I forget the name of your city or I'd look it up for you.) They are destroy on discovery type pests. Schools and kinders are all routinely sprayed as a preventative. You can get literally thousands of them on the one tree. How do I know all this? Why because K's neighbpurly duties included searching everyone's trees for them this year. :)


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