Subject: Handsome Caterpillar
Geographic location of the bug: Northern lower peninsula MI
Time: 09:35 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: We found this caterpiller eating the Gopher Spurge that’s been growing in our garden. He’s really pretty, and we’re not going to bother him but we would really like to know what kind of moth or butterfly he will become. I cant find anything like it in searches.
How you want your letter signed: Observer
We confirmed the identification of your Leafy Spurge Hawkmoth Caterpillar, Hyles euphorbiae, on Sphingidae of the Americas where it states: “The leafy spurge hawk moth, Hyles euphorbiae (length: 2-3 cm, wingspan: 5-7 cm), was the first classical biological agent released against leafy spurge in the United States, with approval for introduction granted in 1965. Populations of this insect are present in several western states, including Montana, Idaho, North Dakota, Wyoming, Minnesota and Oregon, and now Washington (Spokane County). The moth was also introduced from Europe into Ontario, Canada, and then into Alberta where specimens are occasionally still taken. “