Silk has been and is still a luxury item in most households. The very first people to cultivate silk were the Chinese in the 27th century BC. But where do we get silk from? The main silk producer, Silk worms of that (Bombyx mori), is the little creature to thank for this highly prized material. Silk worm moths belongs to the family Bombycidae and has a total of 166
described species (Takeda 2009). These species are all Old World and mostly come from Asian origin. This website will guide you through the distribution and evolution, silk worm life cycle & silk and economic benefit from silk production. Humans have manipulated the silk worm for so long that the species cannot live in the wild by itself. From this features it would naturally have in the wild have been lost as a result of relaxed natural selection (Abe et al. 2005). By manipulating the silk worm through many generations humans can produce the finest quality silk. This makes silk a highly desirable material throughout the world, creating a large industry for the product.
This website was created for Educational purposes by Rebecca Robinson as a part of an assessment piece of the University of Queensland.