Currently viewing the category: "Hornworms"
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Subject: Sphinx moth or tomato?
Location: SW New Mexico – near Silvercity
February 7, 2017 9:01 am
Greetings, I thought this was a sphinx moth caterpillar but someone else suggested it was a tomato worm. BTW – there were definitely sphinx moths out the same day that I took this photo. But there was also a different kind of horn worm out there also.
Signature: Narglyph

Tomato Hornworm

Dear Narglyph,
Sphinx Moth Caterpillars and “Tomato Worms” are not mutually exclusive because several species of Sphinx Moths have larvae that feed on tomato and other plants in the family, and the larvae are known as Hornworms.  Your individual appears to be the dark form of
Manduca quinquemaculata, the Five Spotted Hawkmoth and its larva is known as the Tomato Hornworm which appears in both green and dark forms.  You can compare your individual to this very dark individual pictured on BugGuide.

Thanks – I took the photo a while ago and I didn’t get pictures of what it was feeding on. A friend is writing an archaeological report on sphinx moths and datura and wanted to make sure she was getting the photos labeled correctly. I will pass on the info to you.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is this?
Location: India
February 3, 2017 7:29 am
Please identify
Signature: Promila

Oleander Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Dear Promila,
We have several images in our archives from India of Oleander Hawkmoth Caterpillars, and we suspect you found this individual not far from an oleander shrub.  The adult Oleander Hawkmoth is a lovely green moth.

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Subject: Swallowtail Catterpillar
Location: New Delhi India
January 4, 2017 4:55 am
You’ve been very helpful till now, i found this fat big caterpillar, i think it is a swallowtail, but which species ?
thank you kindly
Signature: Aditi

Oleander Hawkmoth Hornworm

Dear Aditi,
This is not a Swallowtail Caterpillar, and it is not even a Butterfly Caterpillar, but rather a Hawkmoth Caterpillar, commonly called a Hornworm.  It is an Oleander Hawkmoth Hornworm.  It will mature into an Oleander Hawkmoth, so we are speculating there was an oleander shrub nearby.  The species is not found without oleander.

Hey Daniel,
I figured after sending you a request, as i was googling more caterpillars with black markings, we have Yellow Oleander trees in access. Thanks,

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Subject: caterpillar, South Africa
Location: Pretoria, Villieria, South Africa
December 17, 2016 2:11 pm
I found my cat playing with this in my garden today, with a lot of interested birds hanging about. I rescued it and tried to put it in a safe place back into my garden after taking this pic. Couldn’t find it there later, so, hope it managed to hide itself again. Luckily it had no injuries.
It made a loud clicking sound with its mouthparts which I assume was a defence response to scare off any predators.
I’ve tried to google to find out what it is. The nearest thing I found was a sphinx moth caterpillar in America, but not this specific form which I assume is endemic to South Africa. I have seen sphinx moths growing up here as a child, but very rarely so. It has a tail spike which looks a bit like a flower stamen – it has little yellow nodules on it.
Hoping you guys can help out.
Signature: a wild gardener

Death's Head Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Death’s Head Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Dear wild gardener,
You are correct that this is the caterpillar of a Sphinx Moth in the family Sphingidae.  More specifically, it is a Death’s Head Hawkmoth Caterpillar,
Acherontia atropos.

Thanks! These moths are very rare, I hope the caterpillar makes it to mothood! :} Your link to the South African biodiversity site not longer works, herewith the updated link:

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Subject: What is this larva?
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
December 11, 2016 10:46 am
This larva is in a garden in South Africa. It is currently summer, I’m not sure what tree it is on.
Any help would be appreciated.
Signature: Yahya Atiya

Hornworm:  Hippotion osiris

Hornworm: Hippotion osiris

Dear Yahya,
Thanks to this image on iSpot, we feel quite confident your Hornworm is
Hippotion osiris.   According to Sphingidae of the Western Palaearctic where the moth is known as the Greater Silver-Striped Hawkmoth:  “Major Hostplants. In Africa, principally Vitis and Parthenocissus spp.  Minor Hostplants. In Africa, Rumex, Polygonum, Impatiens, Cissus, Ipomoea, Spathodea, Fuchsia and various Rubiaceae.”

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Subject: Very Strange Grub
Location: Northern ACT, Australia
December 13, 2016 6:37 pm
I found a very strange grub underneath my sliding door. It is rather small, it is green mostly and has an interesting pattern on its body. It appears to have two fake eyes on the top of its head and has a barb on the rear of the bug. It doesn’t have legs which is why I am calling it a grub. It is not worm like. It is highly active when I touch it with a straw. It doesn’t move without stimulation. It’s probably about the same size of the top half of your thumb and about as wide. The sliding door where it is currently hiding is between the kitchen and the outdoor area which contains gardens and lawn.
Signature: Sincerely, Anonymous

Vine Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Vine Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Your Vine Hawkmoth Caterpillar, Hippotion celerio, is a wide-ranging species found across Australia as well as many other parts of the world.  You can read more about the Vine Hawkmoth Caterpillar on Butterfly House.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination