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Screengrab via Olly Boon/YouTube

This poisonous caterpillar is Donald Trump’s hair come to life

Nature is full of surprises.


Miles Klee

Internet Culture

Posted on Oct 4, 2016   Updated on May 25, 2021, 9:12 pm CDT

What if Donald Trump’s orange combover became sentient and crawled off his head? When you look at the Megalopygidae (or flannel moth) caterpillar, it doesn’t seem so far-fetched. The unusual larva—also known as a woolly slug or puss caterpillar—has more recently been nicknamed the “Donald Trump” caterpillar for reasons almost too obvious to mention.  

In addition to its striking appearance, reported, the Trumpesque bug is “venomous” and “highly toxic,” which prevents it from being eaten by birds or elected president of the United States. It’s nasty all right:

Touching Trump (the caterpillar version, of course) results in immediate skin irritation and pain that can feel as bad as a broken bone and radiates across an entire limb. It is followed by burning, swelling, nausea, rashes, blisters, headaches, and in extreme cases chest pain and difficulty breathing. The situation is made worse by the venomous spines remaining in the skin, with cellophane tape being the best method of removal. 

In a way, this little guy has been very successful. But do we really want its feelers anywhere near the evolutionary codes? A scary thought.


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*First Published: Oct 4, 2016, 12:55 pm CDT