Subject: Unidentified crawling object
Location: Tokyo, Japan
July 30, 2012 8:37 pm
Hi Mr.bugman,
My daughter and I found this Caterpillar on my slippers. We liked it so much we decided to keep it. After much research on what type of spices it was we came up with nothing. As of only one day with us I believe it has either started to build its cocoon or molt? I’m not sure. Any help would be much appreciated. Thank you so much
Signature: Shane and Hayden Silva

Caterpillar of Indian Fritillary

Dear Shane and Hayden,
This is the caterpillar and chrysalis of the Australian Fritillary,
Argyreus hyperbius, but the path that took us to that discovery was a bit convoluted.  We first recognized that the correct family is Nymphalidae, the Brush Footed Butterflies, but our searching of caterpillars from Japan did not prove fruitful.  We decided to see if we could at least determine the butterfly species from that family that are found in Japan and we were led to this FlickR page of Nymphalidae in Japan, and upon checking the species one by one by combining the scientific name and caterpillar in the search engine, we eventually found this photo of your caterpillar on Thaibugs.  The entire life cycle is depicted on the Butterfly House website where it is called the Australian Fritillary, but the image of the caterpillar is very contrasty and the colors do not show very wellLearn About Butterflies calls this the Indian Fritillary and we have a nice photo of an adult female Indian Fritillary from Japanin our own archives.

Chrysalis of Indian Fritillary


Location: Japan

4 Responses to Caterpillar and Chrysalis of Indian Fritillary in Japan

  1. James says:

    Thank you for this post! I found one of these caterpillars in Central Japan (Nagoya) and had trouble identifying it until I came across this very helpful blog post. Thanks again for the help! I would have liked to take it home, since it was wandering on a wall (quite far from any foliage) and probably ready to pupate.

  2. Polly Gumm says:

    I live in Iwakuni Japan and have one in my pansy flower pot. I let the caterpillar grow and eat the pot of pansies now it is a cocoon. I have been taking pictures. Please tell me how long in the cocoon before it emerges butterfly?!

    • bugman says:

      The average time a butterfly spends in the chrysalis stage is about two weeks, depending upon temperature and other weather conditions.

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