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

Subject:  Decimators
Geographic location of the bug:  North-East Coast of Taiwan
Date: 02/15/2019
Time: 05:23 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Learn’d Fellows,
Every year at this time, my wild fig, having just sent forth it’s tremulous new leaves, is malevolently machete’d bare by these horned devil mowers. I have transplanted them to a wilder fig. Still I would  like to know my foe. Some deep-leaf sleeper-cells remain. Thanking you, in solidarity, ever-vigilantly.
How you want your letter signed:  Castellano

Common Mapwing Caterpillars

Dear Castellano,
We believe these are butterfly caterpillars from the family Nymphalidae, and that is where we are going to begin our research.  Thanks for providing the host plant.  That is often extremely helpful, and that information quickly produced this FlickR image of a Common Map Butterfly Caterpillar,
Cyrestis thyodamas, and the poster wrote:  “The curious mind must ask, why is this caterpillar like this?  My observational response is that these larvae feed on the new leaves of Ficus trees. Developing shoots appear as tightly swirled red tips at the ends of branches and these caterpillars line themselves up along the axis of open leaves, heads closest to the origin of the leaf, with their spines imitating the fresh foliage that is developing.”  We like the name Common Mapwing which is used on Learn About Butterflies where it states:  “The Common Mapwing is usually encountered singly or in two’s and three’s, in open forest edge habitats. Males are often seen on gravel roads or along pebble-strewn river beaches, where they bask in full sunlight while imbibing mineralised moisture. They are initially nervous and difficult to approach but once they start imbibing they tend to remain at the same spot for several minutes.  Females are seen less often, but sometimes encountered along forest trails, or nectaring at flowers in forest gardens.  Both sexes habitually rest beneath leaves with their wings outspread.  Less commonly they will bask on the upper surface of large leaves, but tend to only do so in areas of dappled sunlight.”  This represents a new species for our site.

Thank you for your gracious and comprehensive reply. I look forward to metamorphosis.
Their beauty is far from common.


What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Caterpillar found in Vietnam
Geographic location of the bug:  Vietnam
Date: 01/20/2019
Time: 03:07 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Can you ID this creature?
How you want your letter signed:  Connie E

Baron Caterpillar

Dear Connie,
This is a Baron Caterpillar in the genus
Euthalia.  There is a similar looking image on Jungle Dragon.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Cabbage White Caterpillars
Geographic location of the bug: Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
Date: 12/16/2018
Time: 04:59 PM EDT
In late December, Daniel noticed that the leaves on the wild mustard that was growing in the garden looked as though he had eaten them, but he knew he did not want to begin eating the leaves on such young plants.  When Daniel eats the mustard greens, he generally only picks half the leaf, leaving being the central vein and half a leaf to help the plant gain strength.  These Cabbage White Caterpillars seem to have adapted to eating only partial leaves to minimize the damage to the plant, though still rendering the organic leaves unappetizing to many picky eaters.  Here is a Cabbage White Caterpillar from BugGuide.

Cabbage White Larvae

Cabbage White Larva


What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  What is this?
Geographic location of the bug:  Cypress, CA
Date: 12/09/2018
Time: 04:31 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  This is currently on my lime tree and not moving.  I thought it was a butterfly but the head looks like a lizard or snake.
How you want your letter signed:  Rita

Orange Dog

That’s ok!  I found it!  It’s a skull caterpillar! A Very cool bug indeed.
I love that you get so many photos of weird bugs that you cannot answer them all.

Dear Rita,
We are not certain where you found the name “Skull Caterpillar” but we do know that Orange Dog is a commonly used name for the caterpillar of the Giant Swallowtail.  The markings on the Orange Dog, which feeds on the leaves of orange trees and other members of the citrus family, are thought to mimic bird dropping for protection.

Very interesting, thank you:)
I got the term skull caterpillar from a google search.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Unknown chrysalis
Geographic location of the bug:  Columbus, Ohio
Date: 11/02/2018
Time: 04:54 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  So, saw this chrysalis on the outside of a building.  No clue who made it.
How you want your letter signed:  Amber

Swallowtail Chrysalis

Dear Amber,
Most butterflies have a chrysalis that hangs downward from the tip of the abdomen from a silken button spun by the caterpillar, but most Swallowtail caterpillars have an upright chrysalis that is also supported by a silken girdle.  Your chrysalis looks like a Swallowtail Butterfly chrysalis, but we are not certain of the species.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Chrysalis in SE Michigan
Geographic location of the bug:  SE Michigan
Date: 10/19/2018
Time: 11:54 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  These (2) are in my yard.  The immediate area is a vernal marsh area, with swamp milkweed.  They are not on the milkweed, but it is close by.
How you want your letter signed:  Bill Jones

Parasitized Monarch Chrysalis

Dear Bill,
Physically, this appears to be a Monarch chrysalis, however the color is not normal.  A normal Monarch chrysalis is bright green with gold flecks, and as it nears the time for the adult to emerge, the orange wings appears through the exoskeleton.  Your chrysalis appears to have fallen prey to a parasite, probably a Tachinid Fly like the chrysalis pictured on Monarch Lover

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination