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

Subject: What kind of (caterpillar)?
Location: Hong Kong
May 22, 2016 7:24 am
We saw this in Hong Kong on 22 May 2016 in the woodland area by a reservoir. It looked like a caterpillar to us but we could not be sure with the strange patterned head and ‘horns’. Any insight as to what bug this may be and if it is poisonous would be very much appreciated!
Signature: Tai Tam

Lappet Moth Caterpillar

Lappet Moth Caterpillar

Dear Tai Tam,
This is a Lappet Moth Caterpillar in the family Lasiocampidae.  We found some matching images from China of Caterpillars in the genus
Trabala on FlickR.  Here is another FlickR image.  Some Lappet Moth Caterpillars have urticating or stinging hairs that can cause a skin reaction in sensitive people.

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Brown striped caterpiller
Location: SW Ohio
May 9, 2016 6:48 am
I live near Dayton, OH, and found this caterpiller on my patio table. I have never seen one like this. Can you help ID it?
Thank you.
Signature: Jennifer

Forest Tent Caterpillar

Forest Tent Caterpillar

Dear Jennifer,
This distinctive caterpillar is a Forest Tent Caterpillar,
Malacosoma disstria.  According to BugGuide:  “larvae feed on leaves of alder, basswood, birch, cherry, oak, poplar, willow.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Bug Identity
Location: Palmer Tx
April 15, 2016 3:46 pm
These bugs are everywhere . I need to know what kind is it please?
Signature: Does not matter

Forest Tent Caterpillar

Forest Tent Caterpillar

This is a Forest Tent Caterpillar, Malacosoma disstria, a social species that often feeds in large groups.  Periodically, there are significant population explosions, and based on this submission of Forest Tent Caterpillars we received last week, this is one of those years in Texas.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Moth or caterpillar ?
Location: Lake Jackson Tx
April 3, 2016 2:34 pm
Spotted a very large batch of worms on a tree here on the Texas gulf coast,
Wondering as to what they are, moth, caterpillar or butterflies…. Just curious, thanks in advance!
Signature: Curious Rae

Eastern Tent Caterpillars

Forest Tent Caterpillars

Dear Curious Rae,
Your image of a group of Eastern Tent Caterpillars as well as a marvelous close-up of an individual are an excellent addition to our archives.  Folks wanting to make identifications can view documentation of both details of the individual and the group aggregating behavior for the species.  You can find out some wonderful information on the Eastern Tent Caterpillar on the State University of New York at Cortland site devoted to Social Caterpillars maintained by Terrence D. Fitzgerald where it states:  “In terms of complexity of interactions, eastern tent caterpillars stand near the pinnacle of caterpillar sociality. The adult moth lays her eggs in a single batch in late spring or early summer.  Oviposition is limited to cherry, apple and a few other rosaceous trees.  The egg masses contain on average 200-300 eggs. mothEmbryogenesis proceeds rapidly and within three weeks fully formed caterpillars can be found within the eggs. But the small caterpillars lie quiescent  until the following spring, chewing their way through the shells of their eggs just as the buds of the host tree begins to expand.first tent  The newly hatched caterpillars initiate the construction of a silk tent soon after emerging.  The caterpillars typically aggregate at the tent site for the whole of their larval life, expanding the tent each day to accommodate their increasing size. Under field conditions, the caterpillars feed three times each day, just before dawn, in the evening after sunset, and at mid afternoon. During each bout of feeding the caterpillars emerge from the tent, add silk to the structure, move to distant feeding sites en masse, feed, then return immediately to the tent where they rest until the next activity period. The exception to this pattern occurs in the last instar when the caterpillars feed only at night. The caterpillars lay down pheromone trails to guide their movements between the tent and feeding sites. The insect has six larval instars.  When fully grown, the caterpillars disperse and construct cocoons in protected places.  The adults emerge about two weeks later.  Mating and oviposition typically occur on the same day as the moths emerge from their cocoons and being completely spent the females die soon thereafter.”

Eastern Tent Caterpillar

Forest Tent Caterpillar

Update:  April 5, 2016
Thanks to a comment from Ben, we agree that this is a Forest Tent Caterpillar,
Malacosoma disstria, a different species in the same genus.  According to BugGuide:  “Larvae: dark-gray to brownish-black background body color, highlighted by broad, pale-blue lines and thin, broken yellow lines extending along each side” and “Eastern Tent Caterpillar (Malacosoma americanum) has an unbroken cream/white line along its back, and a dark face.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Caterpillar Tanzania
Location: Ndutu, Tanzania
March 29, 2016 5:47 am
This large caterpillar c 9cm was found on the ground in the Ndutu area of Serengeti in Tanzania in February. The area was grassland and acacia woodland.
Is it possible to identify it please?
Signature: Mary Berry

Lappet Moth Caterpillar we believe

Lappet Moth Caterpillar we believe

Dear Mary Berry,
We believe this is a Lappet Moth Caterpillar from the family Lasiocampidae.  There is a similar looking image from South Africa on iSpot.

So many thanks for amazingly quick response!   Now scolling through Lappets.
Thanks again Mary

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Elizabeth Preger here!
Location: Bangkok, Thailand
March 20, 2016 9:56 am
I came across this beautiful caterpillar several years ago in Bangkok, Thailand. It was during the monsoon season and I found this creature crawling on the sidewalk during a dry day. I was struck by it’s bright yellow color, but had no idea what it was.
What is it bugman?
Signature: Your favorite model

Rose Myrtle Lappet Moth Caterpillar

Rose Myrtle Lappet Moth Caterpillar

Dear Elizabeth,
It did not take long for us to find a matching image on the Thailex website identifying this as a Rose Myrtle Lappet Moth Caterpillar, and the description that it has  ” black and yellow bands, an orangey head and legs, with some yellow markings, and some pale blue spots on the black bands. The hairs on the body are mostly whitish, yet there are two characteristic black-coloured bristles of long hairs at either side of the head.”  Searching with that common name, we found the scientific name
 Trabala vishnou on Project Noah, and we are curious if the species name relates to the Hindu deity.  The Nature and More website also has an image of the adult moth.
Now regarding your signature, you place us in a difficult position with your claim that you are our favorite model.  If we confirm that claim, then that might place us in the doghouse with other models, so we will refrain from the superlative, but we cannot deny that your ease and willingness before the camera jumpstarted our recent renaissance in both photography and film, and that photographs of you are among the best we have produced in recent years.  Thank you for being a muse.

Rose Myrtle Lappet Moth Caterpillar

Rose Myrtle Lappet Moth Caterpillar

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination