From the monthly archives: "October 2004"

I find these guys moving as a group with one or two white grub looking worms along with them. I see them at night or early morning on our sidewalk. They were moving in a circle the other night (pict below). I didn’t know to look under worms, grubs, or caterpillars. I live in southern Connecticut. Any help would be great.

Hi Chris,
You have caterpillars known commonly as Army Worms. These are ravenous, very destructive moth larvae that live their early lives in groups, later dispersing as they grow. Here is a good site with addtional information.

Huge Catapillar
my husband took the picture of the catapillar which he said was as long as a small cucumber we live in montebello, california. What kind is it??? does it produce a huge moth or butterfly???
Darcy Jimenez

Hi Darcy,
Your caterpillar is the green phase of the White-Lined Sphinx or Striped Morning Sphinx Moth, Hyles lineata. It is a large beautiful moth that is common in southern California. I see large numbers of moths attracted to the lights at USC when I teach night classes there. The caterpillar comes in both a green phase and a dark phase which are colored quite differently. Here is a site with nice images and information.

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.

cicada pictures
first, thanks for the site! good info and great pictures. I thought I would share these with you. we recently found a cicada in the process of hatching, the pictures of it only halfway out of the shell have gone missing but we do still have these that show it on the shell.
the cord in the picture is a standard outdoor extension cord about 3/8 of an inch in diameter.

Thank you for your beautiful photos documenting metamorphosis of the cicada. They will greatly enhance our cicada page.