Imperial Moth Caterpillar

Sun, Nov 23, 2008 at 1:10 PM
Hello, I found this really cool caterpiller in my garden and I can’t find any pictures that match him it seems most are green. I live in central Florida and would like to know what it is and what it eats. Any information you have would be great.
Thank you in advance!
P.S. my kids and I love your website!!!!
Felice Gilmartin
Central Florida

Imperial Moth Caterpillar
Imperial Moth Caterpillar

Hi Felice,
This is an Imperial Moth Caterpillar, Eacles imperialis.  Most specimens of caterpillars of this species are green, but in order to better ensure the survival of the species, there are also blue-green, brown, and orange color variations of this caterpillar.  Many caterpillars change color right before pupation.  Imperial Moth Caterpillars pupate in the soil, and we suspect this individual left the tree upon which it was feeding, and was searching for a nice plot of dirt in which to pupate when you encountered it.  Imperial Moth Caterpillars are not real fussy about their food.  Specimens are found on a large variety of deciduous trees and they will even feed on some coniferous trees.  Adult Imperial Moths do not feed.

5 thoughts on “Imperial Moth Caterpillar”

  1. What does the imperial moth look like? Did I hurt him by moving him? I found him behind my dog’s house and needed to put it back so I moved him below another tree, as to not hurt him. He was so beautiful!!! ?


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