Halloween Skullapillar?
Location: S. Illinois
September 20, 2011 5:26 pm
Found this unusual caterpillar on swamp rose mallow. Was about an inch and a half long, and while it had an inchworm like posture, it had 3 pair of prolegs (two pair? how do you count the big clampy ones in the back?). I don’t think that it is pre-pupation coloration, because I found more than one and they were all black/orange/white.
I wasn’t able to identify it with a few searches, so if it is new to science, I would dub it the Halloween Skullapillar.
Signature: -Bert

Probably Hooded Owlet Caterpillar

Hi Bert,
We haven’t time to research at the moment, but we believe this is a Hooded Owlet Moth Caterpillar in the genus
Cucullia, and BugGuide has numerous photos.

Location: Illinois

5 Responses to Hooded Owlet Moth Caterpillar we believe

  1. gingicat says:

    The variation in a single species of insect is amazing.

  2. Linda W. says:

    This is actually Tarache delecta. I have collected a few in MO that are being confirmed by Dr. David Wagner of U Conn.

    • bugman says:

      BugGuide has no images of Tarache delecta caterpillars, and furthermore, we were unable to locate any images anywhere online of the caterpillar. Can you provide us with a link?

      • Linda W. says:

        Sorry that I can’t provide a link! Dr. Wagner had been working on that particular caterpillar for several years and when we found some on Hibiscus laevis in MO in 2013 and this summer, he suspected they were T. delecta. They are running genetic testing on them to confirm. Perhaps it will be in his next book!

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