strange little creature, moves like slug, orange color, appears to looks kind of fuzzy
September 4, 2009
While outside earlier I had bent down to pick something up, and out of the corner of my eye. I saw something fall. I looked over and it appeared as if a bloom had fallen off of an Indian Jewelweed…until I saw it moving! It had landed on top of a little stone, so my hubby picked it up (while it was on the stone) so I could get a couple of pictures of it. If anyone has any idea what this is, I’d really like to know. As I mentioned in the subject line, it is an orage color, and when looking at it in the pics, it appears to look ‘fuzzy’ ~ it’s movement is much like that of a slug because it seems to ‘suction’ to things and crawl across. if by chance you know what this is, how could we care for it here for a few days? My daughter is in the 11th grade and has just started her ‘Zoology’ class ~ she’d love to take it in to show her teacher! (It’s Labor Day weeked, so school won’t be in session for three days.) We don’t want to harm it in anyway…it is so very interesting. Any help is much appreciated! Thank you.
Barbara M.
Fayette County, WV

Monkey Slug Caterpillar

Monkey Slug Caterpillar

Dear Barbara,
Handle this Monkey Slug Caterpillar, Phobetron pithecium,
with care.  It is not an aggressive species, but careless handling might cause skin contact with the stinging hairs.  The Monkey Slug Caterpillar is the larval form of the Hag Moth and you may read more on BugGuide which indicates:  “Larvae feed on broad-leaved trees and shrubs, including oaks, cherries.

Well, who knew? Not I! Thank you so much for answering my question, I had never seen anything quite like that before! Thanks, also, for the link you sent and informing that it stings! Have a wonderful weekend!

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