Location: Florida Panhandle
July 19, 2017 7:29 am
Would love to know what this little guy is. Caught him eating my apple tree so i remove him and took him someplace else away from my trer
Signature: -Curious Tree Owner
Dear Curious Tree Owner,
Based on this BugGuide image, we are confident that this is the caterpillar of a Red Spotted Purple, arguably one of the most beautiful North American butterflies. A single caterpillar is not going to do any serious damage to your apple tree by feeding on leaves, and caterpillars removed from their host plant generally have little chance for survival. We hope in the future, should you encounter another Red Spotted Purple Caterpillar feeding on your apple tree leaves, you will show a little more tolerance and allow it to remain. In the event you still feel compelled to remove solitary Red Spotted Purple Caterpillars from your apple tree, BugGuide does provide this list of potential host plants: “A variety of deciduous trees: willows and poplars (Willow family), cherries, apples and pears (Rose family), birches (Birch family), oaks and beeches (Beech family), Basswood (Linden family) and others. Also recorded from currant and blueberry bushes.”
You’ll be happy to know I found the little guy and placed it back on the tree. 🙂
Wow, we are happy we caught your request early. For your kindness, we are tagging your submission with the Bug Humanitarian Award.