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

Subject: spikey green caterpillar
Location: Tucson Arizona USA
January 16, 2013 2:05 am
Hey bug man, found this little guy right outside the door of my house. Picked him up and placed him in the garden, but I still want to know what it is! Haven’t seen him around since. Think it’s the Hubbard’s Silkmouth, but I’m not sure. My roommate suggested this sight and is a huge fan. Thank you for any input you can give!
Signature: Mad in Tucson

Sphingicampa Caterpillar

Dear Mad in Tucson,
This is a Royal Moth Caterpillar in the genus
Sphingicampa, formerly the genus Syssphinx According to BugGuide:  “Eight species occur in America north of Mexico” and the caterpillars all look quite similar.  The Arizona Beetles, Bugs, Birds and More website has nice photos of two species.  The Hubbard’s Small Silkmoth is one of the members of the genus and is a very likely candidate for your species.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Unknown butterfly caterpillar Guatemala
Location: North of Guatemala
January 14, 2013 5:41 am
Hi there,
heres a photo (taken last week) of a caterpillar found in the north of Guatemala, close to El Mirador.
Its yellow stripes/bands glow in the dark.
Thanks for your help!
Signature: L.F.

Tetrio Sphinx Caterpillar

Hi L.F.,
This is not a butterfly caterpillar.  It is the caterpillar of a Sphinx Moth or Hawkmoth known as the Tetrio Sphinx.  According to the Sphingidae of the Americas website, it ranges from the warmer areas of the United States including Florida and Texas south into South America including Brazil.  It is also found in the Caribbean.  The caterpillars feed upon:  “Larvae feed on Allamanda cathartica and Frangipani (Plumieria rubra) and probably other members of the Dogbane family: Apocynaceae.  The brightly coloured caterpillar is easy to find in gardens. The larva feeding on a tree of Himatanthus.  This tree produces a white, toxic latex which is incorporated into the tissues of the caterpillar without harming it. The toxins in the caterpillar, however, are toxic to would-be-predators. Larvae with red-yellow-black colours usually carry toxins and are left alone by birds.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: caterpillar
Location: Bay area
January 8, 2013 1:12 pm
hi buggy
Tons of caterpillars on a flowering bush in Bay area. Has formed nests or webs. thanks for your help I donated $10.00 on paypal.
Signature: Tom

Sophora Worm

Hi Tom,
Thank you for your generous donation.  We don’t like to think that we devote additional time to the identifying submissions if someone has donated to the site, and generally we don’t even know that they have donated.  In light of your extremely generous donation, we have been obsessed with trying to identify your caterpillar.  We are happy you mentioned that the caterpillars formed webs, as that was very helpful.  Knowing the plant upon which the caterpillar or other insect is feeding is usually a tremendous advantage when it comes to identification.  Though we recognized this caterpillar as something we had somewhere in our archives, with nearly 16,000 posts, it is sometimes very difficult for us to find old postings when we cannot remember the name.  We found a match to your caterpillar on the Yard and Garden News of the University of Minnesota Extension website and it was identified as a Genista Broom Moth caterpillar,
Uresiphita reversalis.  The site states:  “An interesting caterpillar has been found apparently for the first time in Minnesota in several areas of the state. A genista broom moth caterpillar, Uresiphita reversalis, is about one inch long when fully grown. It’s a pretty insect with a black head with white markings and a slender yellowish green or mustard colored body. There is a series of black and white colored tubercles (raised spots) running down its body with white hairs coming out of them.  When gardeners have discovered this insect in Minnesota, it has been feeding on false indigo, Baptisia. According to BugGuide this caterpillar has also been reported to feed on “Acacia, Genista, Lupinus, Texas Mountain Laurel (Sophora secundiflora) and other pea family shrubs as well as Crapemyrtle (Lagerstroemia indica) and honeysuckle (Lonicera spp.).”  According to BugGuide, the caterpillar is called a Sophora Worm and this excellent explanation of the common names is provided:  “‘Sophora Worm’ is reference to the native host genus: Sophora.  ‘Genista Broom Moth’ is an odd common name for a native North American moth as Genista (common name of “broom”) is an Old World genus, family Fabaceae.   Numerous species of broom have been introduced into North America, some of which have become noxious invasives such as common broom (Cytisus scoparius), French broom (Genista monspessulana) and Spanish broom (Spartium junceum).”  Once we had the name and family, it was easy enough to locate our own 2005 archival image of a Genista Broom Moth Caterpillar.

hi Daniel
Thank you so much. I think you are too humble! $5 (what the default was for Paypal) is very inexpensive for the service! Don’t sell yourself short. I think there might be a little business in there if you develop the website with a simple drop down menu questionnaire e.g. tents, no tents, geographic area, etc , include picture and ask for $5.
Thanks so much again.
Tom Barnett

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Huge Neon Green Caterpillar
Location: Palm Beach Gardens, FL
January 7, 2013 2:41 pm
I just found this bug in the middle of our office. We have no idea what it is. It is huge and vibrant green. It is probably 3-4” (not stretched out).
Any help would be much appreciated.
Thank you.
Signature: David

Ello Sphinx Caterpillar

Hi David,
Do you have a potted
Ficus plant in your office?  This is a Fig Sphinx Caterpillar, Pachylia ficus, and it is a highly variable caterpillar.  We frequently get photos of green and orange Fig Sphinx Caterpillars and there is also a brown form.  We suspect this individual has been feeding on a potted Ficus plant in your office and has gone unnoticed until it got ready to pupate, at which time it left the plant and sought a suitable location for pupation.  If the plant is a new plant, the caterpillar might have arrived on the plant from the nursery.  If the plant has been in your office for some time, the female moth may have gained entry through a window and laid eggs.  For more information on the Fig Sphinx, go to the Sphingidae of the Americas website.

Correction:  Ello Sphinx Caterpillar, not Fig Sphinx Caterpillar
Thanks to a comment from Ryan which we now agree with, we believe this is actually an Ello Sphinx Caterpillar,
Erinnyis ello, that might have arrived on a poinsettia.  Sphingidae of the Americas has some nice photos of Ello Sphinx Caterpillars.  When trying to identify a caterpillar, it is always helpful to know the food plant.

Yup.  That’s it.  We had poinsettias in the office for the last month.  Thanks.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Please help identify this caterpillar
Location: Western Cape, South Africa
January 6, 2013 4:38 am
Hi there!
The (poor) photo attached was taken yesterday 5th January 2013 in Table View, Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa. Would you be so kind as to try to identify it for me? Thanks a lot!
Signature: Dylan

Death’s Head Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Hi Dylan,
There isn’t much detail in the posterior end of this caterpillar so we cannot make out if there is a caudal horn present, but the coloration and size are consistent with the appearance of a Death’s Head Hawkmoth Caterpillar,
Acherontia atropos, like the one we just posted a few days ago from Israel.  This is a different color morph from the typical Death’s Head Hawkmoth Caterpillars we generally receive which are more green and yellow.

Thanks very much for your response – there is a horn at it’s
posterior. Much obliged for the info.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Caterpillar
Location: Ulu Yam, Selangor, Malaysia
January 2, 2013 8:03 pm
What is this?
found it at Ulu Yam, Selangor, Malaysia.
shoot at 5 a.m
Signature: Asyraf

Stinging Slug Caterpillar

Dear Asyraf,
This is a Stinging Slug Caterpillar in the family Limacodidae, but it appears different from this Malaysian Stinging Slug Caterpillar from our archives or this Blue Striped Nettle Grub, also from Malaysia.  While we can provide a family name, we are unable to provide you with a species at this time.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination