Subject:  Green hornworm (?) from Ecuador
Geographic location of the bug:  Jorupe Reserve, near Macará, Loja, Ecuador (near the Peruvian border)
Date: 04/02/2019
Time: 07:55 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  This photo was taken at the Jorupe Reserve (same location as my Eumorpha triangulum earlier today) on March 9.  This caterpillar is at least 3 inches long and very fat.  As we walked along the trail, these were falling out of certain trees to the ground.  I’m thinking it’s another Sphingidae/Hornworm.
How you want your letter signed:  David

Giant Silkmoth Caterpillar

Dear David,
We agree that this does appear to be a Hornworm in the family Sphingidae, but it is not possible to discern a caudal horn due to your camera angle.  Can you confirm a caudal horn?  Can you provide an image that shows the horn?  We will continue to research this matter and hopefully provide you with an identification.  We will once again contact Bill Oehlke to take advantage of his expertise.

Daniel, here are my only other shots of this caterpillar, all the same individual.  I see no horn.
By the way, I have reduced the resolution on these to make it easier to send them over my inadequate internet connection.  Let me know if you need higher res.

Thanks for your help.

Giant Silkmoth Caterpillar

Thanks for sending additional images David.  We have forwarded them to Bill Oehlke and are still awaiting a response.  We would not want to rule out that this might be a Giant Silkmoth Caterpillar in the family Saturniidae.

Giant Silkmoth Caterpillar

Daniel, I am pretty sure it is Caio harrietae.
Caio harrietae (Forbes, 1944) (Arsenura).
Do I have permission to post this image and the Eumorpha triangulum image?
Bill Oehlke

Ed. Note:  See our archive for images of adult Caio harrietae.

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Location: Macará, Loja, Ecuador

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