Subject:  What’s this caterpillar?
Geographic location of the bug:  Hingham, MA
Date: 09/23/2017
Time: 08:38 AM EDT
Hello, my sons have never seen this type of caterpillar and would love to know what it is called and more about it!
How you want your letter signed:  #askingforhersons

Pre-Pupal Spicebush Swallowtail Caterpillar

Dear #askingforhersons,
This whimsical looking caterpillar is a pre-pupal Spicebush Swallowtail Caterpillar.  The orange color indicates it is pre-pupal, and just prior to pupation, the normally green caterpillars often turn orange when they leave the trees they have been feeding upon to search for an appropriate site to commence metamorphosis.  Here is a BugGuide image for comparison.  Interestingly, we have many more images on our site of the caterpillars than we do of the beautiful black adult Spicebush Swallowtails with their distinctive green spots.

Location: Hingham, Massachusetts

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