Emperor Gum Moth Caterpillar in New Zealand

An nusual Caterpillar from NZ
Hi There
I found this caterpillar whilst trimming some grapevines . I have no idea what it is. I suspect some kind of moth. Hope you can help. Thanks
Tony Austwick
Tauranga, New Zealand

Hi Tony,
We were relatively certain we properly identified your caterpillar as an Emperor Gum Moth Caterpillar, Opodiphthera eucalypti, but finding it on a grape vine had us puzzled. Additional research revealed that grape is a host plant as well as eucalyptus.

2 thoughts on “Emperor Gum Moth Caterpillar in New Zealand”

  1. We have a great big pepper tree in our back yard. We have a ton of these caterpillars in our tree. Looks luke they are gonna kill it off eating all the leaves. Just wondering if they sting? I stepped on a black caterpillar in American and it was very painful. Thanks Shae

    • Emperor Gum Moth Caterpillars do not sting, to the best of our knowledge, however the tiny hairs might have a utricating effect.


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