Put Your Best Six Feet (or Legs) Forward

looper caterpillar on birch leaf

A looper caterpillar, family Geometridae, “loops” up on a birch leaf.

It’s Monday. Again. And what better time to take a bold step forward, my best foot if you will, in the form of my best six feet or legs, (as it is probably not proper to say a caterpillar has feet). I’m not sure if this is really my best work, but I am very proud of this shot and that’s even acknowledging it’s not perfect. (Because my framing did cut off some of the short hairs at the top of the caterpillar’s hump. I will now stop splitting hairs. Ha…ha.) The lighting, background, pose, and composition all lined up very well, if I may say so.

By the way, if you’re wondering, why is he talking about six legs when this caterpillar has ten? Well, technically, those stubby appendages at the back end, are known as prolegs, and are not true legs. They do make for a good substitute for suction cups and help the inchworm’s locomotion. When the caterpillar metamorphosizes into a moth, the true legs at the front become the characteristic six legs of most insects.

Also by the way, this moth larva, a.k.a caterpillar, is a member of family Geometridae, a.k.a. the inchworms. According to BugGuide.net, the taxon name is from the Greek, meaning “to measure the earth.” I think we have the measurements already, but it’s nice to have a purpose.

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2 thoughts on “Put Your Best Six Feet (or Legs) Forward

  1. When I see an inchworm I often wonder what the evolutionary impetus was to create their strange form of locomotion. Two thumbs up for your ending paragraph.

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