Snailcase Bagworm   (four photos)
Apterona helicoidella
previously 
Apterona helix


snailshell-like case for bagworm moth
I stopped for a minute on the upper trail at North Arm Viewing Area of Pineview Reservoir and decided to check
 the underside of some huge leaves belonging to a Burdock plant (I think).  I sometimes find spiders hidden in
the folds.  Instead of a spider, I found this tiny mud case.  I thought it might belong to the world's tiniest potter
wasp, but I was wrong.  And, yes, there is a little creature poking its head out of the hole. Carol Davis 7-8-2013

Apterona helix
This is the tip of my index finger and you can see just how tiny this little case was. Charley Eiseman
(on Bugguide.net)  narrowed down this thing to the home of an invasive species from Europe
called the Snailcase Bagworm. According to most of the information I found, the damage done
to plants by the occupants is minimal Carol Davis, 7-8-2013

snailcase bagworm
This is a better picture comparing the size of this gigantic leaf to the tiny mud hut.  I've circled
the case in red.  I really don't know how I ever spotted it. Now, what is a Snailcase Bagworm,
you ask?  The larva actually never reaches a stage where it has wings.  You can read about it at the
 Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences site
.  It's quite fascinating. Carol Davis 7-8-2013


bagworm moth
Here's a side shot of the case. It looks like a petrified Nemo gasping for air. Colorado State University also has
some information on this strange bagworm.  Carol Davis 7-8-2013

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