inchworm


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inchworm,

name for the larvae of moths of the family Geometridae, a large, cosmopolitan group with over 1,200 species indigenous to North America. Also called measuring worms, spanworms, and loopers, inchworms lack appendages in the middle portion of their body, causing them to have a characteristic looping gait. They have three pairs of true legs at the front end, like other caterpillarscaterpillar
, common name for the larva of a moth or butterfly. Caterpillars have distinct heads and are segmented and wormlike. They have three pairs of short, jointed legs (retained in the adult) on the thorax; in addition, they have unjointed, fleshy appendages, called
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, but only two or three pairs of prolegs (larval abdominal appendages), located at the rear end. An inchworm moves by drawing its hind end forward while holding on with the front legs, then advancing its front section while holding on with the prolegs. Inchworms have smooth, hairless bodies, usually about 1 in. (2.5 cm) long. They are green, brown, or black and in many species have irregular projections that cause them to resemble the twigs of the trees they feed on. Many inchworms, when disturbed, stand erect and motionless on the prolegs, increasing the resemblance. Certain destructive inchworms are called cankerwormscankerworm,
name for two destructive inchworms, or larvae of geometrid moths. The spring cankerworm (Paleacrita vernata) and the fall cankerworm (Alsophila pometaria) are named for the seasons at which the adults emerge from underground pupation.
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. Adult geometrid moths range in wingspread from 3/8 in. to 2 in. (9.5–51 mm). Most are gray or brown with fine patterns and are well camouflaged on trees. The cabbage loopercabbage looper,
moth larva, Trichoplusia ni, that feeds by night on the leaves of cabbage and related plants and is a serious agricultural pest. Like the inchworms (of another moth family), cabbage loopers lack walking appendages in the middle of the body and progress by
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 is not an inchworm, but a caterpillar of a different family. Inchworms are classified in the phylum ArthropodaArthropoda
[Gr.,=jointed feet], largest and most diverse animal phylum. The arthropods include crustaceans, insects, centipedes, millipedes, spiders, scorpions, and the extinct trilobites.
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, class Insecta, order Lepidoptera, family Geometridae.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Wilson et al., "Development of an inchworm deep subsurface platform for in situ investigation of Europa's icy shell," in Proceedings of the Workshop on Europa's Icy Shell: Past, Present, and Future, p.
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The Inchworm was a song in a 1952 musical about which author?
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For the locomotion on a space station, two major gaits are commonly used which are inchworm gait and turnaround gait.
The inchworm. When you visualize your performance improving over time, the outcome will be the result of multiple strategies operating in sync.
Not only does that not matter, but if that wrongness comes in the service of a reaching, the sense, to borrow a metaphor from Jeffrey Ford, of an inchworm at the end of a branch, stretching and repeatedly groping for something beyond, then it may even be something to celebrate.
The movement of the tip was controlled in the x, y, and z directions using optically encoded inchworm piezo motors.
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The researchers let inchworm moths of two species (Jankowskia fuscaria and Hypomycis roboraria) to land on a tree bark and to freely choose the final resting spot and body orientation.
Even though from time to time he compromised his heart to accommodate to the world he would retract his traces like the inchworm so that the square inch space of his heart remained profoundly tranquil, and he would continue as before in mystic contemplation of hills and streams." Translation from Mather, SSHY, 336-37.