the truckapillar is mightiest of all beasts in the forest. they will not quail at the approach of none but only the human, natural enemy in a long trajectory of co-evolving. they are called wild because they enjoy their natural liberty and are borne along by their desires, despite their herbivorous dietary habits implying no harm to any other animal. Yet, they are called from the latin word truculentia meaning of high savagery and coarseness due to their wild rampages deep in the woods. on the hunt for the truckapillar's carried trees, a human has to be wary not to get squelched by its bestiality. for the reason of the batch of all kind of woods on its ridge the french gave its name the ending of pilier, which means a bunch of columnar masses. long in shape they must not be mistaken with any other snake. they are bigger in size than one mighty elephant, so their cousin is said to be the powerful dragon that lives high in the mountains and deep in the cave. there are said to be three kinds. of these, the ones which are not heavy in stature, with slim chassis, are little more slippy. the tall ones, with bulky chassis, are fierce. but like every truckapillar they fear the rumbling sound of thunder and are even more frightened by fire. the ones wearing a crown on their heads are the most noble, more gentle in their appearance and of less ferocity. The truckapillar is a creature that generally springs from wood, or some other earthly material, but not as the result of intercourse, although ocassionally they hatch from eggs. these are lying in a century-long sleep under the bark of the tree before awakening

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"i very much like you.

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"i just do.

"no really, tell me. how could you know i would like you?

"well, we come from the same place.


this insect is quite atypical in the taxon of lepidoptera, as the larva does not undergo metamorphosis to evolve into an imago after cocooning. contrary to older tales, the truckapillar will not become a papermoth, yet it remains in its larval stage throughout its entire life and also reaches sexual maturity in this form. this ignites the conflict between entomologists, whether the genus of pillidies is wrongly classified in the saturniidae.  even though their is no report of neither a chrysalis nor a remaining cocoon, some scientists take their paper glands as an anatomical proof they must have pupated in former times. other researchers hold a couple of observations of how the insect layd eggs as an evidence against this, and besides,  the prominent ovipositor in the rear apparently is part of the morphology of an adult.

sitting here and waiting for you. i brought some snacks.

humans follow

their migratory routes and convert the grazed areas into agricultural land.

to gain more knowledge about the  different truckapillar species and their populations, our research team of entomological ecology heavily relies on the data of citizen scientists. if you make any sightings of truckapillars or you want to actively observe them, please fill in the form below. you can also attach images or sketches of your encounters, every kind of submission is helpful for us. to  proceed to the file download click this icon:

please send the filled in form, images or other kind of reports to the following mail address:

department for entomological ecology vienna:

jannis neumann (head of research team)

naoki matsuyama (population statitics)

barbara eichhorn (field research)

christos kyritopoulos-ninas (field research)



Privately owned forests in Croatia cover an area of 581,770 ha, which is 22 % of the total area of forests and forestland in the Republic of Croatia. The total growing stock in private forests in Croatia amounts to 78 301 000 m3, or 20 % of the overall growing stock of the entire forest management area. The average growing stock is 163 m3/ha and the increment is 4.4 m3/ha or 2.7 %. Privately owned forests in the area managed by Delnice Forest Administration extend over 22,380 ha. These forests are presently classified into uneven-aged forests, which is not conducive to their future management. Bearing in mind their condition regarding the silvicultural form, biological properties and ecological requirements of the tree species participating in their formation, the management of these forests should follow the methods applied to forests of high silvicultural form or seed forests, which are regular and selection forests, and to coppices. Forests of high silvicultural form are regular or even-aged seed forests covering an area of 13,264 ha, while selection seed forests cover an area of 6,085 ha. Regular coppice forests are found over an area of 3,031 ha. Placing these different forest forms into a uniform uneven-aged class prevents, among other things, the application of those necessary silvicultural operations which are aimed at attaining better stability, productivity and sustainability, or sustainable development.

Based on the above structural indicators, especially the growing stock and increment of these forests, we may conclude that the current condition of private forests in this area is equally bad and worrying as that of other private forests in Croatia. Such a situation may be attributed to a number of factors, such as, for example, the inexpert application of silvicultural treatments, the disintegration of rural environments, property fragmentation, the owners’ social status, the insecurity of private ownership, the length of the production cycle, insufficient control and sanctioning, and finally, the disobeyance of legal regulations.


(Matić & Delač 2008)


Sječa šume zbog migranata

Iz hrvatskog MUP-a potvrdili su da ‘Hrvatske šume na traženje Ravnateljstva policije provode određene aktivnosti na području uz granicu’

Nevladine organizacije i međunarodna javnost dosta dugo prozivaju hrvatske vlasti za brutalan odnos prema izbjeglicama koje iz okolnih zemalja pokušavaju ući u zemlju. Najnoviji primjer je sječa šume na visovima planine Plješivice i uz nekadašnji aerodrom JNA Željava uz samu granicu s BiH. Radnici, po tvrdnjama vlasti BiH, tokom uklanjanja vegetacije ulaze na njihov teritorij, što Hrvatska demantira uz tvrdnju da taj način želi bolje kontrolirati ulazak izbjeglica iz BiH.


(Jovanović, Nenad: Sječa šume zbog migranata. in: Novosti, 21.svibnja 2020. Web. URL <> 18.06.2020 )


Deforestation due to migrants

The Croatian Ministry of the Interior confirmed that ‘Croatian forests are carrying out certain activities in the border area at the request of the Police Directorate’

NGOs and the international community have long called on the Croatian authorities for their brutal treatment of refugees trying to enter the country from neighboring countries. The latest example is deforestation on the heights of the Plješivica mountain and along the former JNA airport Željava along the border with BiH. According to the BiH authorities, the workers enter their territory during the removal of vegetation, which Croatia denies, claiming that in this way it wants to better control the entry of refugees from BiH


you can draw on it, cut it, tear it apart, tape it together, glue something on, it's very good for writing, you fold it, and if you fold it it a certain way you can even put stuff inside. you read from it, you learn from it, you store your knowledge with it

scientists from sweden have found a way to automatically detect the number of logs loaded on their back in a two-step procedure. for this, yella and dougherty firstly use a k-means algorithm to differentiate between the actual wood and the rest of the image. secondly, a cht (circular hough transform) is employed to detect the individual logs. under the circumstance of clear visibility of the logs (neither snow nor mud coverage), the detection is over 90% accurate (yella & dougherty 2013).

this method is used to examine big amounts of data taken by camera traps in order to determine the truckapillar's dietary habits. especially with climate change, it will be of interest to figure out, if there is a shift in the ratio between corniferous and broad-leafed trees in their nutrition and if the average diameter of the trunks will decrease.

figure 1

Various Stages of Processing Aimed at Detecting and Counting the Logs. Notice that the Log Detection Accuracy is >90%.


bibliography (2020): WWF: Rainforest deforestation more than doubled under cover of coronavirus. Web. URL <>,18.06.2020


Yella, Siril; Dougherty, Mark; (2013): Automatically Detecting the Number of Logs on a Timber Truck, in: Journal of Intelligent systems 22, 4. Web. URL <>, 20.06.2016

Matić, Slavko; Delač, Damir;(2008): Silvicultural Treatments as a Method of Increasing the Value of Private Forests in Gorski Kotar. in: Šumarski list 132, 3-4. Web. URL <>, 20.06.2020


index of figures

figure 1: "Various Stages of Processing Aimed at Detecting and Counting the Logs. Notice that the Log Detection Accuracy is >90%." Journal of Intelligent Systems 22, 4; 2013 10.1515/jisys-2013-0026. Web. URL <>, 20.06.2016

figure 2: "Loss of forest crown coverage in hectares from March 2017 to 2020 in six countries in Asia" WWF Blog.

Web. URL <>, 18.06.2020

figure  2

Loss of forest crown coverage in hectares from March 2017 to 2020 in six countries in Asia

2020: preliminary values; Confirmation is expected from the University of Maryland based on the following satellite images by October 2020; for the countries of China, Cambodia, Myanmar and Thailand there are no values for 2017 available.


"The forests most heavily hit by deforestation in March were in Indonesia, with more than 1,300 square kilometers lost. 

The Democratic Republic of Congo saw the second-largest forest loss with 1,000 square kilometers followed by Brazil with 950 square kilometers.

The Brazilian non-profit research institute Imazon told news agency DPA that deforestation was up in April as well. The institute recorded a loss of 529 square kilometers in the Amazon in April, a rise of 171% compared to last year. [...]

The WWF says there's ample evidence to suggest the boom in rainforest deforestation is being fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic.

With stay-at-home orders and strict lockdowns in place in countries around the world, authorities haven't been able to patrol nature preserves and indigenous territories as often — a situation that criminal organizations and illegal loggers have been using to their advantage.

The virus has also prompted massive job losses in many countries, leaving many newly-unemployed people increasingly desperate for sources of income.

The WWF noted that the legal timber trade is a substantial source of income for several African countries but is virtually on ice amid various coronavirus shutdowns. The broken supply chains have led to concerns that the forests are losing their value and forest conservation efforts are losing their foothold.

Along the Mekong River in southeast Asia, tourists have disappeared and with them a substantial source of income for local merchants selling forest products like honey, nuts or berries. Many have left the cities and returned to their home villages and are cutting down trees for firewood or a source of income."

(, 2020)+permalink:

because of their huge size truckapillars need a specialized respiratory system to meet their needs of oxygen. like other insects they have spiracles in their exoskeleton through which the air can enter the body. in insects, a finely branched network of  tracheal tubes deliver the oxygen directly into the tissue of the whole body. however, in the massive bodies of pillidies passive diffusion of the gases would only reach the very outer strucutres, therefore they require an active ventilation system. by contracting special tracheal muscles, which are comparable to blood vessel muscles of vertebrates, they inhale a larger amount of air and pump it through the whole body. this is accompinied by pulsating movements of the abdomen, transporting the consumed air in a similarly branched system of exspiratory tracheols to the emission spiracle on the dorsal thorax, where it gets released. this respiratory system of two different orifices for inhaling and exhaling is unique amongst all arthropodes.

pilage (old french; late 14c.) the act of plundering

stripping of goods by open violence

piliare (vulgar latin) could figuratively be understand as the act of skinning

preying upon logs; a battue on the truckapillar

with their ovipositor the truckapillar cannot only lay eggs, but can also spray a colorful secretion on trunks. this very bright liquid is produced in the marking gland and varies from sheer white over flashy tones of yellow, orange, pink and green, but can also be of a more subtle purple. however, each individual has their own colour shade, that usually does not change over their lifetime. thus, members of a pack can sometimes be distinguished by their tree markings. for a long time those had been subject of wild speculations variing from being used in rituals by witches during their coven to being a kind of interarboretic exchange of knowledge. nowadays we know that truckapillars use them for communication amongst each other. two horizontal lines can be found all along their migratory routes. they provide guidance to truckapillars on their long-distance travels, since they always move to the best logging grounds throughout the different seasons of the year. some species like the siberian monarch truckapillar (pillidies sibirica) go distances of more than several thousand kilometers on those travels. a single horizontal line with an arrow pointing down, however, is used to mark their territory towards other conspecifics. even though, some species live in packs, they are not very eager  to tolerate others in their preserve. only in mating season they would leave their group in order to find sexual partners. with their ovipositor they lay usually two eggs under the bark of a tree and mark the trunk afterwards with several points around, all on the same heights, in order to signal the nest to others, so i would not get eaten. eventually, this tree will be the first meal in the life of a freshly hatched truckapillar. this is quite cruel, since the younger sibling, which is still lying under the bark, gets gulped down as well. this evolutionary strategy ensures that the newborn truckapillar gets sufficient nutritinonal intake and finds enough food ressources in their nearby surroundings. the calorie requirements are enormous in the first days and the animal doubles its size in less than a week, before they become fully-grown in the age of fifteen months. the largest species, the great crested crawler (pillidies cristatus) lives in the amazon rainforest of ecuador and reaches a maximum length of over 18 meters. in comparison, this is nearly as long as three african bush elephants (loxodonta africana), the largest living land mammal. the only tree markings which are still kind of an enigma to entomologists are transverse lines surrounding the trunks. the insect sprays often, yet not always on, before the would eat them. after marking a trunk, they leave the tree untouched for a little while, just to devour it later. researchers wonder if this special kind of treatment towards their sustenance is comparable to human rituals in connection with their eating habits.

>fight     pkmn

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bug bite

iron defense


wood hammer