who is this handsome devil?
July 27, 2009
found July 18 2009
near Clearwater British Columbia Canada
Clearwater British Columbia Canada
We researched your caterpillar on Bill Oehlke’s wonderful website and we are pretty certain that this is a Yellow Banded Day Sphinx Caterpillar, Proserpinus flavofasciata. As its name implies, the adult moth is diurnal. According to Bill’s website: “The Yellow-banded day sphinx, Proserpinus flavofasciata (Wing span: 39 – 49 mm), flies in Alaska south through British Columbia to Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, and Colorado, and from British Columbia east across southern Canada to Nova Scotia and Maine.” The website also indicates: “Larvae feed on willow weed (Epilobium) and possibly thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus). Mature larvae pupate and overwinter in burrows dug under stones and other solid objects. The penultimate instar is pale green with a pair of pale, dorsolateral lines running from the head to the base of the short caudal horn. The last instar is brown-black with numerous black dots; caudal horn replaced by a black button surrounded by a white band edged with black.” The depth of field on your photograph is quite shallow, but the focus on the head and caudal button makes identification easy. We are going to copy Bill on this response so he can add your sighting to the comprehensive data he is compiling.