Currently viewing the category: "butterfly caterpillars"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Caterpillar?
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

Red Spotted Purple Caterpillar

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.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: West Los Angeles sighting – Monarch 1
Location: West Los Angeles
July 6, 2017 8:26 am
Hi Bugman,
Here’s the first set of pictures of Monarchs
Signature: Jeff Bremer

Mating Monarch Butterflies

Dear Jeff,
Thank you so much for sending your gorgeous images documenting the complete life cycle of the Monarch butterfly.  It is going to take us a healthy chunk of time to format all your images and set up the posting properly so we are just starting by posting an image of a mating pair of Monarchs.  The male is the individual with the open wings, and the female appears to have been tagged because her hind wings have what appears to be an inked marking.  We can also identify the male, according to BugGuide, because:  “Males have scent-scale patches on hindwings, prominent when wings are open, and just possible to see when wings are folded.”  Over the course of the day, we hope to get all your excellent images added to the posting.

Male Monarch

Hi Daniel,
I don’t have complete life cycles for the rest of the butterflies that have graced our back yard, but I’ll send in what I have.  Regarding the Marine Blue, I can resend them with the other pics.  The ones I sent seemed to have unusual coloring.
By the way, I want to thank you for so graciously accepting my pictures.  It makes me happy to be able to share them.
Jeff

Female Monarch

Nectaring Monarchs

Ovipositing Female Monarch

Monarch Egg

Monarch Caterpillar Hatchling

Monarch Caterpillar

Prepupal Monarch Caterpillar

Monarch Chrysalis

Monarch Chrysalis (adult about to emerge)

Newly Eclosed Monarch

Emerged Adult Monarch

Monarch Nursery

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Catepillar
Location: Somerville, Ma
July 4, 2017 12:46 pm
We are interested in Finding out what kind of caterpillar this is.
Signature: Amy

American Lady Caterpillars

Dear Amy,
These American Lady Caterpillars,
Vanessa virginiensis, will eventually transform into a lovely orange American Lady butterfly.  According to BugGuide:  “Larvae feed on Cudweeds, Everlastings and Pussytoes.”

Hello,
I so wish I could send you something cool, but all the tents have been invaded and they are all gone. I think the Mockingbirds got to them. We had a nest of them in our climbing rose with 3 fledglings all about. Maybe we’ll get them again sometime!
Sadly,
Judy

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Spiny Orange-banded Caterpillar
Location: Amherst, MA
June 28, 2017 8:48 pm
Found several of these of an unmowed field in Amherst, MA.
Signature: Randall Phillis

Baltimore Checkerspot Caterpillar

Dear Randall,
We were able to identify your Baltimore Checkerspot Caterpillar,
Euphydryas phaeton, thanks to images posted to BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “The primary larval food source is turtlehead (Chelone glabra), although recent studies have shown that the caterpillars will eat a larger variety of plant species including English plantain (Plantago lanceolata), a common yard weed.”  The adult Baltimore Checkerspot is a very lovely butterfly.

Baltimore Checkerspot Caterpillar

Thank you so much.
This helps and clearly is the match.
Feel free to use the photos I sent if they could be helpful for you guys.
Randy Phillis

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: caterpillar on lamb’s ears
Location: San Diego, CA
June 24, 2017 6:49 pm
Hello,
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?
Thank you!
Signature: Judy Sharp

American Lady Caterpillar

Dear Judy,
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. 🙂
Judy

Dear Judy,
We would love any images you can send of chrysalides or adults once they emerge.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: West Los Angeles sighting – Gulf Fritilary – 1
Location: West Los Angeles
June 20, 2017 1:52 pm
Hi Bugman,
Here’s the next set of pictures. Hope you enjoy them.
Signature: Jeff Bremer

Mating Gulf Fritillaries

Dear Jeff,
It is going to take a chunk of time to correctly edit the posting to contain your awesome images depicting the life cycle of the Gulf Fritillary,
Agraulis vanillae, a common Southern California butterfly.  We have decided to begin the posting with your awesome image of a pair of mating Gulf Fritillaries, a logical place to begin a life cycle, and we will add to the posting as we reformat your images. This has prompted us to initiate a new tag of Buggy Life Cycles to house both this and your previous Anise Swallowtail documentation.

Gulf Fritillary ovipositing on passionvine.

Hatchling Gulf Fritillary caterpillar (right)

Gulf Fritillary Caterpillar

Pre-Pupal Gulf Fritillary Caterpillar

Pre-Pupal Gulf Fritillary Caterpillar with, possibly, a parasitic Wasp (right)

Hi Daniel,
This is the second time you’ve spotted a parasitic wasp in one of my pictures.  Is there anything I can, or should, do about this?  I understand the wasp has as much right to exist as the butterflies, but I can’t help feeling protective over the caterpillars.
Thx, Jeff

Gulf Fritillary Chrysalis

Sorry Jeff,
We can’t think of a way for you to protect the early stages of butterflies from parasitoids unless you raise the caterpillars in a container with a fine mesh screen.

Gulf Fritillary

Gulf Fritillary

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination