You've probably heard about some cute but dangerous caterpillars being spotted in the Northeast. Well, they've made their way to New York and are already causing issues...

The caterpillars we're talking about are called "White Hickory Tussock Moth Caterpillars," and they're not deadly, but they are still poisonous and can cause harm. These caterpillars have white hairs all over them and black markings, including a line of black spines along its back. The black spines actually contain venom, which is very dangerous for other animals and their predators, but can also be irritating for us.

If you look closely at the photo (at the top of this page), you'll see a rash that a young boy from New York developed after allegedly touching one of these caterpillars. You can see splotchy, red marks across his stomach, and even more noticeable redness and irritation on his arm. We're told that this was the start of the rash, and it had spread further up his arms and chest during the night. According to the Facebook message we received the boy is doing okay and has been given Benadryl to help with the discomfort.

We hear about "dangerous things" or products to look out for, or recalls and things like that all the time, but when you know someone it's happened to or seen a first-hand account of these incidents, it makes it even more real, even more scary. These caterpillars are originally from Canada, but recently have become more common in the northeast, especially in Pennsylvania and areas of New York. If you're not sure what you're looking out for - Check out this YouTube video of an up-close view at these little buggers:

Again, these caterpillars aren't deadly to us, but they are unsafe. In most cases if you touch one, you can develop a rash and redness, and it can be itchy and painful. But in some serious cases, the White Hickory Tussock Moth Caterpillar can cause vision issues. So if you see one of these little guys, it's best to steer clear of it.

 


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