Poisonous asp caterpillars on the rise in Houston area

HOUSTON – Experts say August is when a poisonous caterpillar typically appears and hospitals all around Texas are reporting more and more caterpillar stings.

Phillip Hutto, of The Woodlands, was taking out the trash early Thursday morning when he felt a shooting pain in his left hand. He felt another sharp pain on his right side and that's when he saw the asp caterpillar.

"It started on my knuckle then went down my elbow and up to armpit. It was very, very painful," Hutto said.

He was in such severe pain he collapsed and his father rushed him to Memorial Hermann Hospital.

Asp caterpillars look cute and cuddly, but their fur-like covering contains toxins that are poisonous to humans.

"The asps are the worst," says pest control expert Claude Griffin.

Griffin says the weather may have led to a population boom and he predicts more encounters with the critters likely sticking around through fall.