What kinds of caterpillars are these?
We found the caterpillar in the first picture in Belfountain, Ontario, and the caterpillar in the second one at Go Home Lake near Georgian Bay, Ontario. We’ve never seen them before! Also, can you direct us to pictures of what they will look like when they turn into moths? Any help to ID them would be appreciated. Thanks!
Janice, Paul, Riley and Gillian
Hi Janice, Pauk, Riley and Gillian,
Your Belfountaine caterpillar is a Laurel Sphinx, Sphinx kalmiae, which is easily distinguished from other Sphinx or Hawkmoth caterpillars known as Hornworms because of its black and blue mottled horn. It feeds on laurels, ashes, lilacs, privets; also reported from poplars. Here is an image of the mounted adult moth and here is a photo of a living specimen.
Your second caterpillar from Go Home Lake is a Giant Silkworm known as a Cecropia Moth, Samia cecropia or Hyalophora cecropia. This is a large beautiful moth. Here is a wonderful site that covers the entire metamorphosis of the Cecropia Moth.