Subject: caterpillar on lamb’s ears
Location: San Diego, CA
June 24, 2017 6:49 pm
I have a plant that just popped up in my garden and think it’s a lamb’s ears. Each tip of the tallest 5-7 branches have been folded up into caterpillar homes. See picture… Do you have any idea what they might be?
Signature: Judy Sharp
This distinctive caterpillar is an American Lady Caterpillar, Vanessa virginiensis. According to BugGuide: “Larvae feed on Cudweeds, Everlastings and Pussytoes – Gnaphalium, Anaphalis, Antennaria.” BugGuide also makes reference to the caterpillars making “leaf shelters” and there is a nice image on BugGuide with the caption “The larva weaves the leaves together and feeds inside the shelter.”
Thank you Daniel,
That’s exactly what they are doing – “weaving” for shelter. I see no signs of them feeding on any leaves. I hope they survive. I look forward to seeing them as butterflies. 🙂
We would love any images you can send of chrysalides or adults once they emerge.