Probably Zigzag Furcula Caterpillar from Alaska

Subject: Leaf catepillar bug?
Location: Alaska
August 7, 2016 10:00 pm
Hiking in alaska and this guy was on my shoe
Signature: Alaska

Probably Zigzag Furcula Caterpillar
Probably Zigzag Furcula Caterpillar

This is one of the Prominent Moth Caterpillars in the family Notodontidae, and we are quite certain it is in the genus Furcula.  Though BugGuide does not list any sightings in Alaska, at least three species are reported from British Columbia Canada and BugGuide describes the caterpillars as:  “body greenish-yellow to green with bluish-green or brown saddle in middle of back; anal prolegs modified into pair of long narrow tail-like projections, giving the appearance of a forked tail.”  The Zigzag Furcula, Furcula scolopendrina, is a likely species identification and this caterpillar image from BugGuide looks like a very good match, though other caterpillars in the genus look quite similar.  According to Encyclopedia of Life:  “geographic distribution includes        Alaska.”

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