Currently viewing the category: "Cutworms and Owlet Caterpillars"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Mantis vs Caterpillar?
Location: Coryell County, Texas
October 13, 2015 7:37 am
Hello again, hope you are both well!
This smallish mantis (another male Carolina mantis, perhaps?) was hanging upside down from an Autumn Sage bush (Salvia greggii). At first I thought it was holding a flower, then realized it was eating prey. He made short work of it, too, with many quick, small bites.
I think it is a pink bird-dropping caterpillar, quite small, but had a lot of trouble getting a good photo due to the wind, dim lighting, an uncooperative flash, and my own lack of finesse. Please tell me that this wasn’t a Giant Swallowtail caterpillar. I can’t find any references to any butterflies using Autumn Sage as a host plant, although many pollinators and hummingbirds love the flowers.
Very warm, upper 90’s, around 5 PM, shaded corner of the garden.
Thank you so much and best wishes!
Signature: Ellen

Male California Mantis eating what might be a Tobacco Budworm

Male Carolina Mantis eating what might be a Tobacco Budworm

Dear Ellen,
We agree that this is most likely a male Carolina Mantis, and upon searching our own archives for a pink caterpillar on sage, we located this posting of what might be a Tobacco Budworm eating Russian sage.  There is a BugGuide posting that indicates the caterpillars have been found on sage and BugGuide also notes:  “Caterpillars vary greatly in color. They seem to take on the color of the flower they are eating – green, pink red or maroon forms are described. Consistent features include small dotlike black ‘microspines’ giving the body a rough texture. Later instars typically have a brown head capsule and stripes along the body including a broad pale subspiracular stripe.”  Our original posting especially resembles your caterpillar.

Male Carolina Mantis eats Caterpillar

Male Carolina Mantis eats Caterpillar

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: A Mystery Caterpillar
Location: Circle B Bar Reserve, FL
October 8, 2015 4:30 pm
Hello, and thank you for ID-ing that ground spider!
So today I have a caterpillar found in 10/20/13.
Signature: Cicada lover

Possibly Owlet Caterpillar

Possibly Owlet Caterpillar

Dear Cicada Lover,
This request has been on our back burner because we did some research but we were not successful in determining an identification.  This caterpillar really reminds us of a Hooded Owlet Moth Caterpillar from the genus
Cucullia, but we could not find any matching images on BugGuide.  We still believe it is a member of the Owlet Moth family Noctuidae.  Perhaps one of our readers will have more luck with an identification.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: what is this caterpillar?
Location: bemidji, Minnesota
September 13, 2015 7:24 pm
found this little guy and am having a hard time identifying
Signature: jamie

American Dagger Moth Caterpillar

American Dagger Moth Caterpillar

Dear Jamie,
This is an American Dagger Moth Caterpillar,
Acronicta americana, and we found a matching image on BugGuide to verify its identity.  According to BugGuide:  “Larvae feed on leaves of alder, ash, birch, elm, hickory, maple, oak, poplar, walnut, willow and other deciduous trees” and “The caterpillar’s hairs can cause skin irritation.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: fanged moth caterpillar!
Location: southern Michigan
September 8, 2015 9:29 am
This is one scary-looking dude! Take a look at those “fangs” and that defensive posture!! Can you tell me what it is? A friend of mine found it in southern Michigan in July, and asked me to share it with anybody who might help identify it. Big thanks for everything you guys do!
Signature: LM – Michigan

Cutworm

Cutworm

Dear LM – Michigan,
This is a Cutworm in the subfamily Noctuinae, but we are uncertain of the species.  Though we believe it is not the Caterpillar of a Yellow Underwing, we think you should see the similarities to the head on this individual posted to BugGuide.  The terminal prolegs are especially distinctive.  You can try browsing BugGuide for a more specific identification.

Cutworm

Cutworm

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: PA caterpillars
Location: Lancaster, PA
August 13, 2015 7:58 pm
Hi! I have never seen this caterpillar before and I’ve lived in Pennsylvania all my life. I couldn’t find a similar photo anywhere on the Internet. Hoping you can solve the mystery. Thanks!
Signature: Jennifer

Camphorweed Cucullia

Camphorweed Cucullia

Dear Jennifer,
This is a Hooded Owlet Moth Caterpillar in the genus Cucullia, and in our opinion, it closely resembles this Camphorweed Cucullia,
Cucullia alfarata, pictured on BugGuide.

You are amazing!  Many thanks.  Interesting how very colorful caterpillars can become very dull looking months.
Keep up the great work!
Thanks again,
Jennifer

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: caterpillar
Location: Niagara-On-The-Lake, Ontario
June 5, 2015 5:15 pm
My husband found this gem in his roofing pouch, wondered if it came off the walnut tree and what kind it is. Underwing perhaps?
Signature: me

Underwing Caterpillar

Underwing Caterpillar

This is the Caterpillar of an Underwing Moth in the genus Catocala.  Underwing Moths get their common name from the brightly colored underwings that flash while the moth is in flight, but are concealed beneath bark patterned forewings that act as camouflage when the Underwing Moth is at rest.  We are postdating your submission to go live during our absence from the office in mid-June.

Underwing Caterpillar

Underwing Caterpillar

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination