Bag worm to share


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adrian_wee

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Hi all,

I have been amazed by this little architect for quite some time already. Like this below..


Think its a bagworm species. Some info that i quoted:
Bagworms are a group of highly specialized lepidopterans belonging to the family Psychidae and exhibit extreme development of sexual dimorphism. Males are winged whereas females lack functional appendages. Larvae of both males and females, soon after hatching from the eggs climb up to the top of their host plants in order to have an access to the soft and palatable tips of the growing shoots. They construct a small but tough bag of silk of either cylindrical or conical shape and glue small fragments of plant tissues around their cases. Larvae always keep their body inside the cases. While moving about, their head and thorax are protruded out so that they move forward on their thoracic legs dragging the case behind them, which is gripped by hooks on the abdominal prolegs. When taking rest, the rims of the cases remain attached to a twig by means of silken thread so that the cases hang vertically with both their openings remaining closed.

The characteristic sexual dimorphism, fascinating gait and peculiar case architecture collectively make each individual bagworm a biological curiosity. The bagworm larva grows in size until the room inside its case becomes insufficient to accommodate it. Eventually it expands the size of its case by discarding the older materials, such as thorns and/or twigs and attaches newer and bigger materials. Here, this phenomenon is referred to as case-renovation behaviour.

When the larva realizes that the space inside the case is not optimal, it cuts optimum-sized thorns or twigs and glues it to the rim of the bag at around 45° inclination. When the required number of thorns/twigs have been cut and glued, the larva bites away the wall of the bag along the length of one of the old thorns/twigs which is cut loose and eventually discarded. The new thorn/twig is pulled into its place to fill the slit and glued along the whole length with fresh silk.

I had the chance to observe one of them renovating its bag and shot some pics to share. This bag construction is made of vertical branches..

it climbs up a branch of its choice..

and it starts chewing on one end..

till it chews through the branch..

Amazingly, it hangs onto the stable branch via a silk thread while it rotates the chewed off branch to start chewing off the other end to get the length it requires..
 

adrian_wee

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it chews off the other end..

and positions the branch to be slotted between its existing branches on the silk bag

Branch is then glued onto the bag with fresh silk...

it grabs the branch that was previously chewed off (surprisingly stuck on by silk) and starts to chew on the end with leaf
 

adrian_wee

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till it chews off the head...

positioned the brach again...

slot it in...

and glue with fresh silk..

It had just added 2 more new branch to renovate its bag home..hope you guys enjoyed this as much as i do.

Thanks for viewing
 

hweechwee

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Hi Adrian

Thanks for sharing this Bag worm's story. :thumbsup: I had taken picts on this worm before but had no idea what species it belongs to. Cheers! :D
 

Federick

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Good documentary capture.
First time seeing this bugger at work. Thanks for sharing.
 

zcf

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Thanks, nice catch, also don't know what adult species it become later.
 

Ramius75

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nice pictures!! good job there ! :D
 

Qazwer

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Nice story and pics. Really interesting. have to open my eyes wider next time.
:bigeyes:

:)
:thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
 

tltan

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woah,

impressive. How long were u there?
 

tchuanye

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Thanks for sharing this interesting series and the story behind!
 

Ridicule

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Woah facinating..thanks for sharing!
 

adrian_wee

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Hi all,

Thank you for your encouraging comments.. I still hope that I can observe the construction of the species shown in #01. I spent abt 30mins observing this behaviour.

For bagworms, the male evolves into a winged insect, while the female remains as lavae form for the rest of her life. The male will fly into the bag of a female during mating, and the eggs will be hatched within the bag itself.


Cheers,
Adrian
 

Qazwer

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adrian_wee said:
Hi all,

Thank you for your encouraging comments.. I still hope that I can observe the construction of the species shown in #01. I spent abt 30mins observing this behaviour.

For bagworms, the male evolves into a winged insect, while the female remains as lavae form for the rest of her life. The male will fly into the bag of a female during mating, and the eggs will be hatched within the bag itself.


Cheers,
Adrian
Whoa ... Thanks for the educational info. You sure did your homework!
:thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
 

sulhan

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Wowo...

Thanx for the info. A couple of weeks backi saw this in my daughters kindergaten compound.
This little "worm" covered with nucely arranced twigs feeding on rose buds.

Now i know where to start searching for info on them.
 

adrian_wee

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Thanks.. I am also facinated by them... glad to provide the info too!!

cheers,
Adrian
 

bollywoodboy

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what i like about the pics is the details. nicejob man...keep it up:thumbsup: :thumbsup:
 

alan choo

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Wow, Macro shooter also must have story to tell.I have a long way to go.
Nice series you have here.Very educational.
 

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