Currently viewing the category: "Cutworms and Owlet Caterpillars"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Spiny caterpillar for ID
Geographic location of the bug:  Central Virginia, USA
Date: 09/18/2017
Time: 12:59 PM EDT
Early autumn in Virginia — mid-September
Found this caterpillar on an Eastern Bluestar (Amsonia) plant in my garden
About 1.5 inches long
How you want your letter signed: VirginiaGardenGal

Long Winged Dagger Moth Caterpillar

Dear Virginia Garden Gal,
We suspected this to be a Dagger Moth Caterpillar from the genus
Acronicta, a large and diverse genus with several spiny caterpillars.  We eventually identified your caterpillar as that of a Long Winged Dagger Moth, Acronicta illustris, thanks to this and other BugGuide images.  It appears as though this caterpillar might be capable of stinging.

Long Winged Dagger Moth Caterpillar

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Please don’t be a Budworm
Geographic location of the bug:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, CA
Date: 09/10/2017
Time: 05:56 PM EDT
Dear Bugman,
Today while inspecting my medical marijuana plants, I discovered this caterpillar. I also discovered some brown buds. Is this a dreaded Budworm?
How you want your letter signed:  Constant Gardener

Tobacco Budworm

Dear Constant Gardener,
According to Rollitup:  “The tobacco budworm varies greatly in appearance so it can easily be confused with other species. Making an accurate ID of your attacker can be important because some species have built up resistances to certain treatments. Luckily for us growers, if you find a caterpillar on your plants you can be 99% sure its a tobacco budworm. If you live in Africa, Europe, New Zealand, Australia or Asia its going to be the species
Helicoverpa armigera. If you live anywhere else its going to be the species Heliothis virescens. The distinction between these two species is not important however since they can both be treated using the same methods.  Most people find the larval form (caterpillar) on their plants so I won’t spend much time describing the adult moth. The caterpillars are initially pale green and often have black dots covering their body. Thin dark lines run down the length of the abdomen and tend to be darker around the second and third segments. As the larva ages (progresses in instars) the black dots may develop a red border around them. The abdomen is also covered with numerous microspines that give the caterpillar a rough feel. The head capsule is nearly always a light brown color. Again I wouldn’t worry too much if this description doesn’t completely match up with the caterpillar you find. There is great phenotypic variation in the tobacco budworm so there can be different colors and designs.”  According to Featured Creatures:  “Tobacco budworm is principally a field crop pest, attacking such crops as alfalfa, clover, cotton, flax, soybean, and tobacco. However, it sometimes attacks such vegetables as cabbage, cantaloupe, lettuce, pea, pepper, pigeon pea, squash, and tomato, especially when cotton or other favored crops are abundant. Tobacco budworm is a common pest of geranium and other flower crops such as ageratum, bird of paradise, chrysanthemum, gardenia, geranium, petunia, mallow, marigold, petunia, snapdragon, strawflower, verbena, and zinnia.”  No mention is made of Cannabis being a host plant.  When we searched that BugGuide, we found an image very similar to your own, and according to BugGuide the food plants include  “Cotton, tobacco, roses, ground cherries, soybean, and many others.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Caterpillar type Worm
Geographic location of the bug:  New delhi , india
Date: 09/10/2017
Time: 10:35 AM EDT
It was found on road near garden
How you want your letter signed:  Vipul

Lily Moth Caterpillar

Dear Vipul,
We started to research your request by searching for colorful caterpillars in India, and we quickly found the Lily Moth Caterpillar,
Polytela gloriosae, on Project Noah.  We then pursued that information to the Insects in Indian Agroecosystems site where it states:  “Feeds mainly on Liliaceae and Amaryllidaceae. Known hosts from India include Amaryllis sp., Gloriosa superba, Crinum asiaticum, Lilium sp., and Zephyranthes sp.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Caterpillar on Amaryllid plants
Geographic location of the bug:  northern Argentine Patagonia
Date: 09/02/2017
Time: 02:19 PM EDT
We have found this caterpillar several times feeding on Rhodophiala leaves in northern Argentine Patagonia (Neuquen Province). Caterpillar image taken in spring (December). Any idea what species?
How you want your letter signed:  Martin

Convict Caterpillar

Dear Martin,
Thank you for providing a name for the plant upon which this caterpillar was feeding.  We quickly located this FlickR posting of a very similar looking, though drabber version of your caterpillar identified as
Xanthopastis timais.  Then we searched that name and found images on our sister site from Brazil, Insetologia.  Finally, we found the species represented on BugGuide where the proper scientific name Xanthopastis regnatrix is provided and it is called a Convict Caterpillar, the larva of the Spanish Moth and the information “common in Florida; rare elsewhere in United States” is provided.

Many thanks for your prompt id.
This must be the southernmost record for this species.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Caterpillar
Location: nr Carmarthen
August 18, 2017 6:42 am
A couple of people have identified this caterpillar as ‘Dot moth’.
Signature: Dara

Dot Moth Caterpillar

Dear Dara,
Please add WTB? to the the list of people who agree that this is a Dot Moth Caterpillar,
Melanchra persicariae.  According to Wildlife Insight:  “The caterpillars reach 45mm in length and can be various shades of green and brown. The distinguishing features are three pale lines cross the dark prothoracic plate behind the head, the central one being an extension of dorsal line and the eleventh segment is raised dorsally.  The Dot Moth caterpillar feeds on a wide range of herbaceous plants and sallows and can be found during the day on plants such as dock and common nettle.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Paddle caterpillar
Location: Detroit, Oregon
August 10, 2017 9:39 pm
Hi bugman! My family and I went out for a walk and found this little guy hanging out on a leaf. We though you might like to have this photo!
Signature: Kristina Schafer

Paddle Caterpillar

Dear Kristina,
First we need to commend you on your correct identification of a Paddle Caterpillar,
Acronicta funeralis.  The first time we received an image of a Paddle Caterpillar many years ago, we tried unsuccessfully to identify it.  It is quite a distinctive looking species, and not easily confused with any other caterpillar.  Your image is especially beautiful.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination