Subject: Caterpillar and nest identification
Geographic location of the bug: Cumberland, Maine
Time: 01:54 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: I have had a caterpillar and now little “egg nest” on my dill plant and am looking for identification. You have a listing of Purple Carrot-Seed Caterpillar. Might these be the same?
How you want your letter signed: lfriedman
You are correct. These are indeed Purple Carrot Seed Moth Caterpillars, but what you have mistaken for an “egg nest” is actually a group pupation. Adult moths will emerge. According to BugGuide: “Introduced (2009) to northeastern North America. Occurs in most of Europe, Asia and northern Africa.” BugGuide also notes: “The larvae feed on plants in the parsley family, mainly the flowers and unripe seeds. Hosts include coriander, dill, carrot (Daucus carota), anise (Pimpinella), fennel, caraway, cumin (Cuminum cyminum), celery, parsley, parsnip (Pastinaca), and cow-parsnip [per Agro Atlas, cited below]; also Seseli and Peucedanum according to BAMONA.”