When a caterpillar is referred to by its scientific name, it is called a larva. Because butterfly caterpillars, along with those of moths, are part of the order Lepidoptera, it is also correct to refer to them as lepidopteran larvae in the plural form. The use of the qualifying term "lepidopteran" is arbitrary, but it may be used to distinguish the larvae of caterpillars and moths from the larvae of sawflies, which belong to the separate order Hymenoptera.Continue Reading
The common-usage word "caterpillar" dates back to the 16th century and is derived from the Middle English word "catirpeller," which is believed to have come from the Latin words for "cat" and "hairy."
Certain species of caterpillars have been valued through the ages as sources of silk. Many others are known for the damage they cause to crops. After leaving the larval stage and maturing into the winged insect stage, most cause no further direct harm.
Caterpillars are often thought of as "eating machines" because of the huge amounts of food, usually leaves, that they can consume. One species, the tobacco hornworm, is capable of increasing its body weight by 10,000 times in less than 20 days. Another species, the cotton bollworm, can cause enormous amounts of crop damage. Significant pest-control efforts are made to minimize the damage that can be caused by the hungry larvae. However, some species have been able to evolve and develop new defense mechanisms to counteract the effects of pesticides and biological controls.Learn more about Zoology
The scientific name for the white-tailed deer is Odocoileus virginianus. The white-tailed deer is found primarily in forest lands throughout North America, Mexico, parts of Central America and southern Canada.Full Answer >
According to Insect Identification, a "child of the earth" insect is the English translation for a common Spanish name of the potato bug, "nino de la tierra." The Archnids E-Zine reports that in New Mexico, the term "child of the earth" is also applied to large arachnids called wind scorpions. The two groups are not related. Wind scorpions are closest to spiders, whereas potato bugs are a kind of wingless cricket.Full Answer >
The scientific name for a snail is achatinoidea. The snail belongs to the order of the same name, the class of gastropoda and the phylum of mollusca in the kingdom of animalia.Full Answer >
The scientific name for the red panda is Ailurus fulgens. The red panda resembles a raccoon with reddish fur. Although red pandas are placed in the order Carnivora, they are generally herbivorous and feed mainly on bamboo, seeds and fruit.Full Answer >