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Man Goes Viral After Raising Seven 'Caterpillar Children' He Found On Tesco Broccoli

Man Goes Viral After Raising Seven 'Caterpillar Children' He Found On Tesco Broccoli

When Sam Darlaston picked up a broccoli from Tesco, he probably never envisaged he would become a father to seven 'caterpillar children' - and a viral hit no less.

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Life took a bizarre turn for the radio presenter, from London, UK, a couple of weeks back when he discovered a caterpillar on a broccoli he was about to cook.

He subsequently bought another one from the supermarket, but this only introduced a further five caterpillars into his life - and then his housemate found one on his too, leaving them with seven caterpillars.


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Sam's initial tweet about the discovery amassed more than 100,000 likes, and rather than just chuck the caterpillars in the garden, he instead decided to raise them and document his progress as a father of seven.

With the help of the considerable following of the caterpillar thread, the gang were named Broc, Ollie, Cedric, Carlos, Croc, Janine, and Slim Eric.

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Being caterpillars, their development has been quite dramatic, with four of them now cocooned and several having quite literally spread their wings and flown the nest.



The Spanish white cabbage butterflies - which are safe to release in the UK - have been welcomed by Sam's housemates; after all, you're lucky to have any sort of pet during lockdown.

Speaking to the Evening Standard about the experience of caterpillar fatherhood, 27-year-old Sam said: "I didn't think they would survive if I put them outside straight away. I read that caterpillars only eat their host plant and I didn't have any broccoli in the garden. So I thought, the best bet is to keep them with some broccoli and they can leave when they're older.

"The first one, within three days he was a cocoon, but the last one took around eight days. But I almost fast-tracked them because I gave them unlimited food. Three of them got out and were in the lounge. You're not meant to move them once they're cocooned, so one is just in the lounge.

"My housemates have just embraced it and now come and check how they are. They were alright with it, they were just like, 'that's how lockdown is going then, we now keep caterpillars'."

So it seems Sam got a lot more than he bargained for from his broccoli - plus Tesco refunded him £1.10 ($1.36). Result.

A spokesperson for the supermarket told LADbible: "It seems like a hungry caterpillar made its way into Sam's broccoli. We're really sorry about this and apologise to Sam for providing an accidental pet with his greens.

"We regularly test our fresh produce for quality but as we encourage our growers to move to more natural production methods and greatly reduce the application of pesticides, this can occasionally lead to the very odd insect being found."

Featured Image Credit: Twitter/Sam Darlaston

Topics: Viral, Food, Awesome, Community, Animals, Tesco

Jake Massey

Jake Massey is a journalist at LADbible. He graduated from Newcastle University, where he learnt a bit about media and a lot about living without heating. After spending a few years in Australia and New Zealand, Jake secured a role at an obscure radio station in Norwich, inadvertently becoming a real-life Alan Partridge in the process. From there, Jake became a reporter at the Eastern Daily Press. Jake enjoys playing football, listening to music and writing about himself in the third person.