My son’s and I located this odd looking caterpillar. It is purple and green with horns. It also has silver spikes on it’s back. We were wondering if you would be able to identify what it is. We have attached a few photo’s as well. Thank you for your time.
We are going to very gently inform you about how crucial it is for you to provide us with location information when submitting an identification request. We are certain this is a moth in the genus Syssphinx, most probably the Hubbard’s Small Silkmoth, Syssphinx hubbardi. It ranges from Arizona to West Texas. It is also found in extreme east California and south Nevada. If you live in central Texas, it is probably a closely related species, Syssphinx heiligbrodti.
I apologize, we live in Tucson, Arizona. I would also like to know if they are poisonous or if they sting.
Hi again Michael,
Thanks for writing back with your location. These caterpillars neither sting, nor are they poisonous. The frightful appearance is a protective device.