Location: Geita Villiage, Mwanza, Tanzania
February 17, 2011 3:07 am
Hi, my daughter spotted this brightly coloured fellow on our garden path we thought it was litter because of the colour. Its the end of the rainy season in Geita, Mwanza which is in north western Tanzania. He did not move very much although produced large quantities of black gunk when we picked him up and he was only about 3cm long. We have seen a most beautiful large butterfly in the garden with this unusual colouring, is it related?
Signature: Sandra Wronsley
At first glance we thought this might be a Giant Silk Moth Caterpillar in the family Saturniidae, but your statement that is is only 3 centimeters long caused us to second guess that idea. Our second guess was that this might be a Stinging Slug Caterpillar in the family Limacodidae so we wrote to Bill Oehlke who runs the World’s Greatest Saturniidae Site to get his opinion. Bill wrote back: “Daniel, I agree with your assessments, but we could be wrong.” We are going to post your caterpillar and tag it as unidentified in the hope that someone may be able to provide additional information. We strongly doubt that this blue caterpillar will metamorphose into the large butterfly you sighted, but that is pure conjecture since there is no photo of the butterfly and the caterpillar is unidentified, though we do believe it is probably a Moth Caterpillar.