Azalea Caterpillars

Caterpillar identification needed
Today I discovered a cluster of caterpillars on a Pieris Japonica at my home here in Raleigh, North Carolina. I’m a school librarian (aka “media specialist)” and I plan to bring in a couple of these “specimens” to show the students at our school, Brassfield Road Elementary. Naturally the display would be more educational if I could identify them. I didn’t find a match in my small field guide at home, and I was so impressed with your web site, I thought I’d defer to your expertise. Thanks so much for your help with the identification,
Vicki Sanders Corporon
Raleigh, NC

Hi Vicki,
These are Azalea Caterpillars, Datana major. According to BugGuide, in addition to azalea leaves which they prefer, they “have also been recorded on apple, blueberry, Red Oak, and Bog Rosemary (Andromeda polifoloa ).”

1 thought on “Azalea Caterpillars”

  1. I recently found these creatures on a shrub up on my property in Brady’s Bend Pa. Never seeing one of these, I posted on Facebook and got my answer. While looking it up on Wiki, it stated that they are predominantly found in Southeast US. But have been reported seen as far north as Delaware and Maryland. Guess what….”They’re Here!” North West PA.


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