Subject: What’s this caterpillar?
July 14, 2017 7:15 pm
My husband found this on the garage floor today (July 14). He picked it up with a paper towel and it seemed to grab on to it. While trying to get pictures, he had a hard time separating it from his glove as it was holding on to that as well. I scoured the internet and cannot find anything remotely close to its image. I’m hoping you can help to identify it! Thank you for your time.
Your image of an American Lappet Moth Caterpillar, Phyllodesma americana, in its threat position is quite wonderful. Here is an image on BugGuide of an individual’s ventral surface that shows the same markings as your individual, and this BugGuide image illustrates the threat position. The BugGuide description is: “Larva: body with blue, black/gray, white, and orange on the back, and densely hairy lobes (lappets) along sides; top of eighth abdominal segment with unpaired hump; when stretched out or alarmed, exposes bright orange band across top of second and third thoracic segments”