Aularches miliaris – dilemma around the coffee-foam-ghost

This beautiful locust was found in Indonesia and it is quite a bird of paradise. The appearance is absolutely gorgeous. The greenish grey wings have bright yellow spots of different size, the head is half jet black and yellow, and the belly is black with blood-red rings. In other areas the face can be whitish or even red. In nature bright colors in contrast with black usually means something. Sometimes it is fake, but this locust feeds on poisonous plants and accumulates the toxins so that it is poisonous as well. Not enough defence, in danger they are able to make a hissing sound (I guess like a ghost). That would scare many of us already I guess. But there’s one more, they can produce a bad tasting foam, enough to cover the entire body. Great defense skills!

Looking for research around this species one paper was very prominent. It describes the situation that this species is nearly endangered in South India, while it is a coffee-plant, teak and much more-eater on the other hand. Mass extinction is ongoing, it is worth a thought whether we want to erase so called pests for ever. A real dilemma!

This coffee locust landed on me, usually we do not handle wild animals