Tuesday 16 February 2016

Toxic caterpillar on the march in Spain after mild winter leads to explosion in numbers being born early

The pine processionary caterpillar poses a threat to small children and animals, especially if the poisonous proteins it carries are ingested

Alistair Dawber Madrid 
Thursday 11 February 2016

The inch-long caterpillar is a common sight but could be poisonous if it is ingested

What lurks at the bottom of the garden? Across Spain, there are increasing fears that it could be the toxic pine processionary caterpillar, which is hatching earlier than usual this year because of the unusually mild weather.

Experts have warned that the caterpillar, which carries poisonous proteins in the barbs on its back, could be a particular risk to small children and animals, especially if the proteins are ingested.

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