Posts Tagged ‘fuzzy white caterpillar’

Thanks to all of you for your overwhelming positive responses to a recent posting Some favorite photos of 2018 that showcased some of last year’s photos that I really like. Check out that posting if you have not seen it yet.

Interesting enough, not a single one of them was from my most-viewed posts of the year. How many views do you regularly get for one of your blog postings? One of my average postings tends to get about 60-80 hits. It is a rare and happy occasion for me to get as many as 100 views for any posting.

Here are links to my five most-viewed postings of 2018 and an indication of how many views they received in 2018 and since they were originally published. You’ll probably notice that four of them were taken in 2013 or earlier. Somehow these postings apparently appear in searches in Google and other search engines and that is how viewers find their way to my blog.

The photos below are ok, but they are certainly not among my favorite or best photos. A review of these statistics reinforces in me the notion that “views” are not a very accurate measuring tool for deciding if a posting or a photo is “good.”

Here is one fun fact about my blog—Red-footed Cannibalfly has been my most-viewed posting for the fourth year in a row. Who knew that so many people were fascinated by this fearsome insect?

Take a look at that posting (or any the others below) by clicking on the highlighted title. Maybe you will be able to discover for me the secret behind their relative popularity.

Red-footed Cannibalfly (31 August 2013) 366 views in 2018 (2457 views since published)

red-footed cannibalfly

Fuzzy white caterpillar (3 August 2013) 341 views in 2018 (1209 views since published)

fuzzy white caterpillar

Blue-eyed garter snake (9 May 2016) 218 views in 2018 (503 views since published)

garter snake

Yellow Garden Orbweaver with a Grasshopper (29 August 2012) 166 views in 2018 (214 views since published)

Insects gone wild (29 May 2013) 125 views in 2018 (901 views since published)

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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How many views does your average post get? WordPress has a strange way of measuring “views” and “likes” that I haven’t quite been able to figure out, but I consider a posting to be successful if it gets about 30 views. A really popular posting might get 50 views.

As I close out my retrospective look this week at my first two years of blogging, I thought I would share again the posting that, statistically speaking, is by far the most popular. Out of the 1200+ postings that I have done, only seven have over a hundred views and the second most viewed posting has 138 views. The posting below has had 371 views.

Don’t get me wrong—I like these photos of the fuzzy white caterpillar, but I certainly don’t consider them to be my best or my favorite images. How did I get so many views?

Not long ago, Leanne Cole, one of my favorite bloggers did a couple of postings on Search Engine Optimization (SEO) that included a discussion of some techniques to make your photos and postings more visible when people do searches with Google and other search tools. I think I may have inadvertently used some of these approaches with the caterpillar posting, because the majority of the views seem to have come from people who found the images as the result of a search, and not from readers of my blog.

I don’t put a lot of faith in statistics and they don’t count for much in my personal estimation of the success of a posting. However, I am by nature a very curious person, so I can’t completely ignore them, even if they seem a little crazy.

Complete text of my 3 August 2013 “Fuzzy white caterpillar” posting:

It’s hard enough to identify moths and butterflies when they are fully grown—it seems almost impossible to do so when they are caterpillars, like this fuzzy white caterpillar that I encountered today at my local marshland park.

The caterpillar had so much long hair that it was hard to see the actual body, which might have been quite small for all I could tell. It was crawling around in the cattails on a day that featured intermittent rain. If you look closely at the first shot, you can see little water drops near what I think is the area of the head.

The second shot may look like it was done with flash, but the darker background was caused merely by changing the settings on my camera and deliberately overexposing the image.


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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Imagine how skinny this fuzzy white caterpillar would appear if its fur were “groomed,” like some of the dogs in my neighborhood. There is one fuzzy white dog, in particular, that looks huge, which I think is a Great Pyrenees. I was shocked one day when I saw that dog with closely cropped fur—it looked to be only half of its normal size.

For some reason, this caterpillar’s hair seems to be more tufted than usual, compared to similar caterpillars that I have seen. Maybe the hair is bunched because of the heavy dew or the way that the caterpillar slept. Clearly the caterpillar is having a bad hair day.

Do you think it could get away with wearing a hat to cover the bad hair?


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I continue to see these white fuzzy caterpillars and have concluded that they may be Virginia Tiger Moth caterpillars (Spilosoma virginica), also known as Yellow Wooly Bear caterpillars.

I have seen some mating white moths in the same area that look like Virginia Tiger Moths and my photos of these caterpillars resemble some of the ones I find on-line for the Yellow Wooly Bear caterpillars.

In any case, I really like the way that the light fell on this caterpillar and illuminated the long white hairs of its body, giving it a halo-like effect.


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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