unknown caterpillar – Junonia?
Thanks for your great website. A neighbor found six of these caterpillars on the sidewalk (Carlsbad, CA; July 30; we had some unusual rainy weather the previous night). Based on what we’ve found on the web, it appears like it might be in the Junonia genus. We’d welcome a positive id for this. Whenever we find caterpillars, we let our kids observe them and see if they form a chrysalis. We’d also like to know what to feed them. We tried basil and parsley, but they are not eating. Also, what kind of environment do they prefer for pupating? Thanks
Mike & Sue
Hi Mike and Sue,
This is a Morning Cloak Caterpillar. They feed on willow, poplar and elm and are also reported on Floss Silk Trees. If they were found on the sidewalk, they may have been wandering in search of a good place to pupate. The hanging pupa are often found on the sides of buildings. We have seen many adults this year near our Mt. Washington, Los Angeles office.