Venezuelan Poodle Moth Is the Internet's Favorite Pet This Week

A fuzzy animal that's equal parts adorable and terrifying has taken the Internet by storm. It's called the Venezuelan Poodle Moth and for the love of all that is holy we hope that it's real.

RELATED: Meme-Hungry Politicians: Don't Try This at Home

RELATED: A Photographer's Lo-Fi 'Real Life' Infographics

I can't even keep a straight face while looking at this little guy (yes I've assigned a sex to this maybe imaginary creature since it, like all bulldogs, is a male). And that's probably the reason why this South American insect of what appears to be of Mogwai-Furby lineage has taken the Internet by storm. It hits that sweet spot where adorable meets terrifying, and it's way cuter than this hellbeast that needs to be killed with fire.

RELATED: Sorry Guys, Prince Charles Never Chased a Girl with a Pot of Bubbles

Here's what we know so far: 

RELATED: How One Retweet from a New York Times Reporter Launched a Hall & Oates Meme

The Story Actually Starts in 2009

RELATED: What Should We Do to Save #WhatShouldWeCallMe?

This hoopla begins on the first day of 2009 when zoologist Arthur Anker uploaded pictures of the Poodle Moth in the Gran Sabana region of Venezuela's Canaima National Park. The moth (can we name him?) appears in this slideshow alongside what appears to be a bevy of crazy insects. "Poodle moth (Artace sp ?), Venezuela" was the only caption added along with information about what camera he used. "Scientists traversing the park in Venezuela where it was seen have been unable to find it again," writes the Atlanta Journal Constitution's George Mathis. 

So Wait, Real or Not?

But unlike other flimsier seeming hoaxes, this one can be traced back to an actual scientist. Cryptozoologist Karl Shuker writes, "eventually I traced the photographer responsible for this enigmatic snapshot, and discovered that he was a bona fide zoologist called Dr Arthur Anker (or Art for short), from Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan." And, as Shuker explains, the moth appears in another flickr set with even crazier looking "neotropical moths" like the one pictured to the right. Seeing that weirdness of that little dude kind of makes the Poodle Moth a little less weird— and more believable. Shuker adds that the Poodle Moth actually looks like it could be related to these things called "muslin moths." For you science buffs, Shuker also has information from one Dr. John E. Rawlins from the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh about ID'ing this creature (and perhaps confirming its existence):

Here’s my vote/guess to ID the poodle moth. The antenna is distinctive.

Lasiocampidae: Artace or a related genus, probably not Artace cribraria(presumably North America to Argentina, but nobody has revised this group from Mexico south). There are more than a dozen described South American species of Artace, but their delimitation, validity, and even their generic placement is uncertain. It will take two things to solve this problem: a comprehensive revision of Artace and kin, plus an actual specimen of a genuine “Venezuelan poodle moth.”

Definitely NOT Lymantriidae or Arctiidae, but easily confused with some Megalopygidae, Limacodidae, even Dalceridae, and Cossidae.

Yes….it is cute.

That's Great, Now Show Me the Memes

Okay, fine. Here: 

Venezuelan Poodle Moth, I Choose You: 

Poodle Moth Gets Drunk with Tom Hanks

"I see ... Poodle Moths" 

Poodle Moth (hat?) and Canada's Royal Wedding

Poodle Mothra

Poodle Moth Can Haz Cheezburger

And the inevitable Poodle Moth Fresco: 

Okay, The Atlantic Wire (and our shoddy photoshop skills) created that last one. So, like Cecilia Gimenez last week, the Venezuelan Poodle Moth is the viral superstar of the week.

Photos via:  Dr. Arthur Anker.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Philippines accuses China of turning water cannon on its fishing boats

    Filipino activists denounced China's coast guard on Tuesday for turning water cannon on Philippine fishing boats in disputed waters, near where hundreds of Filipino and American Marines landed on a beach in a mock assault. The presidential palace in Manila said China's coast guard used water cannon on Monday to drive away a group of Filipino fishermen at Scarborough Shoal, damaging some of their wooden boats. …

  • U.S. says if China used water cannons on Philippine boats, would be provocative'

    The U.S. State Department said on Tuesday that if reports that China used water cannon son Philippine fishing boats in disputed waters are accurate, it would be a provocative step. Filipino activists have accused China's coast guard of turning water cannons on civilian boats in the disputed area on Monday. …

  • Pacmania sweeps Philippines ahead of Mayweather clash
    Pacmania sweeps Philippines ahead of Mayweather clash

    Manny Pacquiao's face is on shirts, dolls and postage stamps, his life story is playing in movie houses and millions are getting ready to party as the Philippine boxing hero's "fight of the century" nears. Pacmania is sweeping the Southeast Asian nation of 100 million people ahead of the May 2 Las Vegas bout against unbeaten Floyd Mayweather to decide who is the best boxer of their generation. Of course, it's the fight of the century," Manila film producer Lucky Blanco told AFP. …

  • ‘Racist remark vs Pinays not reflective of HK sentiment’
    ‘Racist remark vs Pinays not reflective of HK sentiment’

    The Philippine consulate general in Hong Kong believes that the “racist” statement of legislator Regina Ip against Filipina domestic helpers in Hong Kong is not reflective of the general sentiments of the Hong Kong community. Hong Kong is home to more than 173,00 Filipinos working mostly as household service workers. “They have left their loved ones back home to earn a decent living taking care of Hong Kong families. This, in turn, has engendered positive impact on both the quality of life …

  • SWS: Gov’t rating sinks to record low
    SWS: Gov’t rating sinks to record low

    “The Aquino administration is firmly determined to carry on and complete priority programs in all five pillars of the Philippine development plan, to ensure that reforms will be sustained by strengthened public institutions, to tread the righteous path and ensure that good governance becomes the norm at all levels of government, and to sustain and make permanent the gains from the transformation of mindsets and institutions,” Coloma added. Lawmakers expressed belief yesterday that the Aquino …

  • ‘Pacmania’ sweeping the nation
    ‘Pacmania’ sweeping the nation

    Manny Pacquiao’s face is on shirts, dolls and postage stamps, his life story is playing in movie houses, and millions are getting ready to party as the Philippine boxing hero’s “fight of the century” nears. Pacmania is sweeping the nation of 100 million people ahead of the May 2 Las Vegas bout against unbeaten Floyd Mayweather Jr. to decide who is the best boxer of their generation. …

  • House committee to put Bangsamoro police under PNP
    House committee to put Bangsamoro police under PNP

    The House ad hoc committee on the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) will put police forces in the envisioned new autonomous Muslim region under the Philippine National Police (PNP), and not under the regional chief minister. “We will delete the provision in the draft BBL giving the chief minister operational, administrative and disciplinary control over police forces in the region,” Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez, committee chairman, said in a television interview. He said under …

  • Phl to seek more US military aid
    Phl to seek more US military aid

    The Philippines said yesterday it would soon ask the United States for more military equipment and training to build its defenses, as it faces Chinese “aggressiveness” in disputed waters. As hundreds of Filipino and American Marines simulated an amphibious assault to reclaim territory from invaders during annual war games, Armed Forces chief Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang said he was drafting a “wish list” for US aid. Catapang said the Philippines would ask for “equipment and training” when …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options