by Matthew Cobb
This bizarre photo was posted the other day on reddit’s “whatsthisbug” subreddit by Decapod73, with the following information: “Seriously, who makes egg cases like this? Just under 2cm across, Southern Peruvian Amazon”
The various suggestions in the discussion include moth/not moth, harvestman/not harvestman. No one has an answer so far.
Decapod73 says that s/he initially thought it was an ermine moth caterpillar that had started making a cocoon but then got distracted. But then more of the damn things started turning up… Cue creepy music.
Heres one on the underside of a tarpaulin, also by Decapod73 (this was posted a couple of months ago):
So. Ideas anyone? In particular, has anyone from Peru seen this kind of thing before? My guess is a small moth, but I think we need not only an ID, we also need an explanation for the “fencing” – is it to keep out predators? Are there other examples of fences in nature? And why the maypole? Is that again to deter ants or whatever?
Here’s something similar, a moth (?) cocoon that was photographed by Randy Emmit in 2011 that was spotted here by elijrus and linked to on the reddit page thing (I don’t know the correct reddit nomenclature). It looks like there’s an ant stuck in there, but it isn’t clear.
h/t @phil_torres on twitter