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Walking Stick Nymph


This Phasmid nymph was about 1.5 cm in length, black with a yellow design all over the body and legs. Because of the orange banded antennae and its propensity to curl up the tip of the abdomen, I believe this to be the nymph of Autolyca elena. A. elena is a relatively rare, large shiny black, wingless Phasmid in which the males curl the abdomen and look very much like a scorpion. There are no pictures of the nymphs. See spotting of adults http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/137....


Found climbing a wall at night in the same place in which I have seen the adults, semi-rural residential area, San Cristobal de Las Casas, Chiapas, Mexico, 2,200 meters.

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Felix Fleck
Felix Fleck 8 months ago

Great shots! Congrats.

Michael Strydom
Michael Strydom 8 months ago

WOW! Congrats on SOTW!! Great capture!!!

LaurenZarate 8 months ago

Thank you clarka20 :)

clarka20 8 months ago

Wow really cool lauren

LaurenZarate 8 months ago

Thank you so much Daniele, Neil, Leuba, Maria, Ashley, Sukanya, Hema and everyone who liked this little fellow. Can't wait to see him again when he's older.

Neil Ross
Neil Ross 8 months ago

Congratulations, Lauren, on your much-deserved SOTW.

DanielePralong 8 months ago

Congratulations on this awesome find Lauren! It has been been voted Spotting of the Week. The novelty factor, quality of your images, excellent notes an cross-referencing to the adult stage won you the vote.

"This black and yellow patterned little critter with long antennae has been voted Spotting of the Week! Because of the banding on the antennae and the curled up abdomen tip, it is likely to be the nymph of Autolyca elena (family Pseudophasmatidae, or "striped walkingsticks"), a walking stick which is a scorpion mimic. While remarkably like a scorpion in general appearance and behavior, it is phytophagous and does not sting. The type specimens for this species were collected in the Sierra Madre mountains of Chiapas, Mexico, in 2006, and were given new species status in 2008. This would appear to be the first available picture of a nymph for this species.
For images of adults: https://buff.ly/2G7TzJJ "



Neil Ross
Neil Ross 8 months ago

Great spotting, Lauren. I always think of stick insects as being massive things, and don't think I've ever considered that are anything other than that. These are wonderful images of this little fellow. He has a lot of growing potential. Best wishes for your SOTW nomination.

Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway 8 months ago

Handsome little nymph ! The adults do look like scorpions..

Maria dB
Maria dB 8 months ago

Cool spotting - I had not seen a nymph of this type of insect before.

AshleyT 8 months ago

Your spotting has been nominated for the Spotting of the Week. The winner will be chosen by the Project Noah Rangers based on a combination of factors including: uniqueness of the shot, status of the organism (for example, rare or endangered), quality of the information provided in the habitat and description sections. There is a subjective element, of course; the spotting with the highest number of Ranger votes is chosen. Congratulations on being nominated!

SukanyaDatta 8 months ago

Scorpion-mimic!! Wow.

Hema 8 months ago

super cute

Spotted by

Chiapas, Mexico

Lat: 16.71, Long: -92.61

Spotted on Jul 15, 2018
Submitted on Dec 4, 2018

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