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Encyclopedia > Silkworm
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Silkworm
Conservation status: Domesticated
Domesticated mulberry silkworm
Domesticated mulberry silkworm
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Bombycidae
Genus: Bombyx
Species: B. mori
Binomial name
Bombyx mori
Linnaeus, 1758

The Silkworm (Bombyx mori, Latin: "silkworm of the mulberry tree") is the larva or caterpillar of a moth that is very important economically as the producer of silk. A silkworm's diet consists solely of mulberry leaves. It is native to northern China and Persia (current Iran). The conservation status of a species is an indicator of the likelihood of that species continuing to survive. ... Image File history File links Silkwormheadsm. ... Scientific classification or biological classification is how biologists group and categorize extinct and living species of organisms (as opposed to folk taxonomy). ... Phyla Animals are a major group of organisms, classified as the kingdom Animalia or Meta­zoa. ... Subphyla and Classes Arthropods (phylum Arthropoda) (from Greek ἀρθρον, meaning joint and πούς/ποδός, meaning foot) are the largest phylum of animals and include the insects, arachnids, crustaceans, and others. ... Classes & Orders See taxonomy Insects are invertebrate animals of the Class Insecta, the largest and (on land) most widely-distributed taxon within the phylum Arthropoda. ... Super Families Butterflies Hesperioidea Papilionoidea Moths Micropterigoidea Heterobathmioidea Eriocranioidea Acanthopteroctetoidea Lophocoronoidea Neopseustoidea Mnesarchaeoidea Hepialoidea Nepticuloidea Incurvarioidea Palaephatoidea Tischeriodea Simaethistoidea Tineoidea Gracillarioidea Yponomeutoidea Gelechioidea Zygaenoidea Sesioidea Cossoidea Tortricoidea Choreutoida Urodoidea Galacticoidea Schreckensteinioidea Epermenioidea Pterophoroidea Aluctoidea Immoidea Axioidea Hyblaeoidea Thyridoidea Whalleyanoidea Pyraloidea Mimallonoidea Lasiocampoidea Geometroidea Drepanoidea Bombycoidea Calliduloidae Hedyloidea Noctuoidea Families About... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ... In biology, binomial nomenclature is the formal method of naming species. ... Carolus Linnaeus Carl Linnaeus, also known after his ennoblement as , (May 23, 1707 – January 10, 1778), was a Swedish botanist, physician and zoologist[1] who laid the foundations for the modern scheme of nomenclature. ... Silkworm can mean: Silkworm - insect Silkworm (band) Silkworm missile Silkworm (computer game) This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Latin is an ancient Indo-European language originally spoken in the region around Rome called Latium. ... A larva (Latin; plural larvae) is a juvenile form of animal with indirect development, undergoing metamorphosis (for example, insects or amphibians). ... The striking caterpillar of the Emperor Gum Moth This article is about insect larva. ... // Moths and Mouths A moth is an insect closely related to the butterfly. ... Silk weaver Silk is a natural protein fiber that can be woven into textiles. ... Species See text Mulberry (Morus) is a genus of 10–16 species of deciduous trees native to warm temperate and subtropical regions of Asia, Africa and North America, with the majority of the species native to Asia. ... For other uses of this term see: Persia (disambiguation) The Persian Empire is the name used to refer to a number of historic dynasties that have ruled the country of Persia (Iran). ...

Contents


Natural history

Silkworms have a strong appetite, as do all lepidopteran larvae. They eat mulberry leaves day and night. Thus, they grow very fast. When the color of their heads turns darker, it means that it is time for them to moult. After they moult about four times, their bodies turn slightly yellow and their skin becomes tighter, which means they are going to enter an apparently resting state (the pupa or chrysalis), during which they transform themselves into moths. Before becoming a pupa, the silkworm encloses itself in a cocoon, for protection during the vulnerable, almost motionless pupal state. The silkworm is so called because it spins its cocoon from raw silk produced in its salivary glands. Super Families Butterflies Hesperioidea Papilionoidea Moths Micropterigoidea Heterobathmioidea Eriocranioidea Acanthopteroctetoidea Lophocoronoidea Neopseustoidea Mnesarchaeoidea Hepialoidea Nepticuloidea Incurvarioidea Palaephatoidea Tischeriodea Simaethistoidea Tineoidea Gracillarioidea Yponomeutoidea Gelechioidea Zygaenoidea Sesioidea Cossoidea Tortricoidea Choreutoida Urodoidea Galacticoidea Schreckensteinioidea Epermenioidea Pterophoroidea Aluctoidea Immoidea Axioidea Hyblaeoidea Thyridoidea Whalleyanoidea Pyraloidea Mimallonoidea Lasiocampoidea Geometroidea Drepanoidea Bombycoidea Calliduloidae Hedyloidea Noctuoidea Families About... Ecdysis is the molting of the cuticula in arthropods and related groups (Ecdysozoa). ... Chrysalis of Gulf Fritillary in Georgetown, South Carolina Pupation of Inachis io A pupa (plural: pupae or pupas) is the life stage of some insects undergoing transformation. ... Cocoon has a number of meanings. ... The tough brown cocoon of an Emperor Gum Moth. ... The salivary glands produce saliva, which keeps the mouth and other parts of the digestive system moist. ...


Silk

The cocoon is made of a single continuous thread of raw silk from 300 to 900 meters (1000 to 3000 feet) long. The fibers are very fine and lustrous, about 10 nanometers (1/2500th of an inch) in diameter. About 2,000 to 3,000 cocoons are required to make a pound of silk. Based on 1 kilometer (2/3 of mile) per cocoon, ten unraveled cocoons could theoretically extend vertically to the height of Mt Everest. It is estimated that at least 70 million pounds of raw silk are produced each year, requiring nearly 10 billion pounds of mulberry leaves. According to E. L. Palmer (Fieldbook of Natural History, 1949), one pound of silk represents about 1,000 miles of filament. The annual world production represents 70 billion miles of silk filament, a distance well over 300 round trips to the sun. Mount Everest is the highest mountain on Earth above mean sea level. ... Species See text Mulberry (Morus) is a genus of 10–16 species of deciduous trees native to warm temperate and subtropical regions of Asia, Africa and North America, with the majority of the species native to Asia. ...


If the caterpillar is left to eat a hole on the cocoon, in order to exit as a moth, the threads will be cut short and the silk will be useless, so silkworm cocoons are thrown into boiling water, which kills the silkworms and also makes the cocoons easier to unravel. The silkworm itself is often eaten. This article is about yarn fiber. ...


The adult phase (the moth) has been bred for silk production and cannot fly. It is also called the silkworm-moth. They have a wingspan of 2 inches and a white hairy body. Because of its long history and economic importance, the silkworm genome has been the object of considerable study recently. Bombykol is a chemically well characterized pheromone released by the female silkworm to attract mates. In biology the genome of an organism is the whole hereditary information of an organism that is encoded in the DNA (or, for some viruses, RNA). ...


Silkworm legends

In China, there is a legend that the discovery of the silkworm's silk was by an ancient empress called Xi Ling-Shi (Chinese: 嫘祖; Hanyu Pinyin: Léi Zǔ). she was drinking tea under a tree when a cocoon fell into her tea she picked it out and it started to wrapp around her finger, she slowly felt a warm sensation. When the silk ran out, she saw a small cocoon. In an instant, she realized that this cocoon was the source of the silk. She taught this to the people and it became widespread. There are many more legends about the silkworm. Xi Ling-Shi or Xilingshi, (Chinese: 嫘祖; pinyin: ), is a legendary Chinese empress—wife of the Yellow Emperor. ... Pinyin (Simplified Chinese: 汉语拼音; Traditional Chinese: 漢語拼音; Pinyin: HànyÇ” PÄ«nyÄ«n), also known as scheme of the Chinese phonetic alphabet (Simplified Chinese: 汉语拼音方案; Traditional Chinese: 漢語拼音方案; Pinyin: HànyÇ” PÄ«nyÄ«n fāngàn), while pin means spell(ing) and yin means sound(s)), is a system of romanization (phonemic notation...


The Chinese jealously guarded their knowledge of silk. It is said that a Chinese princess smuggled eggs to Japan, hidden in her hair. The Japanese thus began their love affair with silk. It takes 2100 silk worms to make a single kimono. Kimono (Japanese: 着物, literally something worn, i. ...


Silkworm diseases

One of the silkworm's deadliest enemies are ants, who devour the silkworms. But be careful not to confuse young, tiny silkworms with ants, as they look somewhat alike. Silkworms suffer from infectious diseases caused by protozoans, fungi, viruses, and bacteria. The French microbiologist Louis Pasteur investigated several silkworm diseases, which threatened the European silk production at that time. Protozoa (in Greek protos = first and zoon = animal) are single-celled creatures with nuclei that show some characteristics usually associated with animals, most notably mobility and heterotrophy. ... Divisions Chytridiomycota Zygomycota Ascomycota Basidiomycota The Fungi (singular: fungus) are a large group of organisms ranked as a kingdom within the Domain Eukaryota. ... A common alternate meaning of virus is computer virus. ... Subgroups Actinobacteria Aquificae Bacteroidetes/Chlorobi Chlamydiae/Verrucomicrobia Chloroflexi Chrysiogenetes Cyanobacteria Deferribacteres Deinococcus-Thermus Dictyoglomi Fibrobacteres/Acidobacteria Firmicutes Fusobacteria Gemmatimonadetes Nitrospirae Planctomycetes Proteobacteria Spirochaetes Thermodesulfobacteria Thermomicrobia Thermotogae Bacteria (singular: bacterium) are a major group of living organisms. ... Louis Pasteur (December 27, 1822 – September 28, 1895) was a French microbiologist and chemist. ...


Medical uses

Silkworm is the source of the traditional Chinese medicine "bombyx batryticatus" or "stiff silkworm" (Simplified Chinese: 僵蚕; Traditional Chinese: 僵蠶; Hanyu Pinyin: jiāngcán). It is the dried body of the 4–5th stage larva which has died of the white muscardine disease caused by the infection of the fungus Beauveria bassiana. Its uses are to dispel wind, dissolve phlegm and relieve spasm. Traditional Chinese medicine shop in Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong. ... Simplified Chinese characters (Simplified Chinese: 简体字; Traditional Chinese: 簡體字; pinyin: jiÇŽntǐzì; also called 简化字/簡化字, jiÇŽnhuàzì) are one of two standard character sets of printed contemporary Chinese written language. ... Traditional Chinese characters are one of two standard character sets of printed contemporary Chinese written language. ... Pinyin (Simplified Chinese: 汉语拼音; Traditional Chinese: 漢語拼音; Pinyin: HànyÇ” PÄ«nyÄ«n), also known as scheme of the Chinese phonetic alphabet (Simplified Chinese: 汉语拼音方案; Traditional Chinese: 漢語拼音方案; Pinyin: HànyÇ” PÄ«nyÄ«n fāngàn), while pin means spell(ing) and yin means sound(s)), is a system of romanization (phonemic notation... A larva (Latin; plural larvae) is a juvenile form of animal with indirect development, undergoing metamorphosis (for example, insects or amphibians). ... Binomial name Beauveria bassiana (Bals. ... Divisions Fungus growing on a tree in Borneo A fungus (plural fungi) is a eukaryotic organism that digests its food externally and absorbs the nutrient molecules into its cells. ... Binomial name Beauveria bassiana (Bals. ... Phlegm (pronounced ) is a type of mucus, the sticky fluid secreted by the mucous membranes of animals. ... A spasm is a sudden, involuntary contraction of a muscle, a group of muscles, or a hollow organ, or a similarly sudden contraction of an orifice. ...


Cuisine

In Korea silkworm pupae, boiled and seasoned, are a popular snack food known as beondegi. Korea (Korean: (조선 or 한국, see below) is a geographical area, civilization, and former state situated on the Korean Peninsula in East Asia, bordering China to the northwest and Russia to the northeast, with Japan situated to the southeast across the Korea Strait. ... Beondegi (번데기) are a popular snack food in Korean cuisine. ...


In China street vendors sell roasted silkworm pupae.


External links

  • Life cycle
  • WormSpit A site about silkworms, silkmoths, and silk
Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Bombyx

  Results from FactBites:
 
Silkworm missile - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (343 words)
Silkworm missiles are 7.36 metres long, and weigh 2988 kg.
The Silkworm was developed at the Institute of Mechanics under Tsien Hsue-shen, a Chinese-American scientist who fled the United States in 1955 after being suspected of Communist ties.
The Silkworm gained fame in the 1980s when it was used by both sides in the Iran-Iraq War; both countries were supplied by China.
Silkworm - MSN Encarta (490 words)
Silkworms possess a pair of specially modified salivary glands called silk glands, or sericteries, which are used in the production of cocoons.
The best-known silkworm is the larvae of the common, domesticated silkworm moth.
Most of the silkworms are killed by heat, either by immersion in boiling water or by drying in ovens.
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