Orange Caterpillar
Orange caterpiller with plue dots observed outdoors in September in El Paso Texas.
El Paso Texas

Tiger Swallowtail Caterpillar

Tiger Swallowtail Caterpillar

Hi Em,
This is a Tiger Swallowtail Caterpillar.

Ed. Note: Another reader sent in a similar photo, and though it was not posted live, we did respond.  We got the following thank you note:
Thank You. I finally was able to Identify him about the time you sent me the answer. I only spent three or so hours searching and fixating on the darn thing, to find out that he(?) is getting ready to pupate. My family had to pry me from the computer so I would eat. LOL. I would have loved to have had the Web when I was a little girl. Good thing I had encyclopedias and a library.
sincerely grateful,
Patricia Neville

15 Responses to Tiger Swallowtail Caterpillar

  1. rick says:

    My kids just found one of these in Montana…..

  2. JOY says:

    We found one tiger swallowtail caterpillar in Alton, Utah today, Wednesday, 9/17/2014. At least we think it was one of those. The grandkids had a great time watching it. What does it eat?

    • bugman says:

      According to BugGuide, the Western Tiger Swallowtail “Larvae feed on foliage of deciduous trees, including cottonwood, birch, elms, willow, alder, sycamore, and aspen.”

  3. Stephanie says:

    Is this caterpillar poisonous?

  4. Patricia says:

    We just found one in Black Forest Colorado .. amazing fangs, suction cups and horns – look s like something from a sci fi movie

  5. Mary says:

    Hello all,
    My daughters found one about a month ago on our patio! In Camp Verde Arizona! We promptly put it into a big glass vase and put dirt, sticks and a bunch of home grown dill with him and he is a cocoon now! Now we just have to wait until may or June next year for it to come out! 😉 we will let y’all know how it goes!

    • bugman says:

      As a point of clarification, a cocoon is a pupal covering, generally made of silk. The naked pupa of a Butterfly is called a chrysalis.

  6. MilMil says:

    I have a question. are they piosonous? We found one in colorado.

  7. Tatum says:

    We just found a tiger swallowtail caterpillar in Colorado and created a home for it. I am very limited in my caterpillar knowledge and do not want to starve the poor thing. My kids are so excited to watch the process of it turning into a butterfly. We found it in the sandbox at our park. Is there a preference of trees for them to feed on or food?

  8. Skylar Glynn says:

    I just found a green one in Nebraska

  9. Tears says:

    OMG we just found one in my front door, but we had no clue what it was. It smelled horrible so we took it with a stick and threw it away… My sister took pictures. I called an exterminator to fumigate around the house not knowing what it was… ?

  10. B young says:

    Found one in Payson az so animated never seen one I’m native to AZ.nature is awesome

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