Tribble or Trouble? Most Toxic Insect Showing up in Arkansas
Have you ever been in your backyard and run across a fuzzy caterpillar or better yet, have you picked one up? Well, you better think twice about what species you are picking up because the Texas Asp is out in full force this time of the season and they could very dangerous to touch.
According to a recent report from a Texas TV station KXAN, these little fuzzy critters have been showing up in Arkansas, Texas, and parts of the South and can cause severe pain if they are touched, they are not deadly, but they could land you in the hospital and make you wish you were dead.
Their hairy bristles are its defensive mechanism, when touched they release a potent venom that causes pain and intense burning immediately. The toxic hairy spines stick to your skin like glue and are very hard to remove and are likely to cause rashes, swelling, nausea, itching, burning, and sometimes breathing problems
According to the Fish & Wildlife Foundation of Florida, the best way to remove the spines is by using cellophane tape, ice packs, and hydrocortisone to help relieve the pain. The pain could vary from person to person but if it gets so severe you can't tolerate it's best you go to the hospital for treatment.
The adult Texas Asp (moths) also known as the puss caterpillar, lay their eggs in the Spring in trees and shrubs then start to emerge in the late fall. So, if you are working in the yard beware of these critters who normally hang around vegetation, trees, and shrubs.
You may accidentally rub up against one and not know it until you feel the immense pain from its sting. It's also best to tell children who play in the yard that if they see one, leave it alone and by all means, don't touch it. After a winter cocoon phase, they emerge as a flannel southern moth.
Beam me up!
The fuzzy asp may look like a cute and cuddly Tribble from the 1960s TV show, Star Trek because it's covered in hair but make no mistake, this just so happens to be the most toxic caterpillar in the United States. I don't think Captain Kirk would want to hold one of these babies.
See the story about the plant in Arkansas that could kill you.
WATCH OUT: These are the deadliest animals in the world