Subject: caterpillar ?
Location: Northeast Georgia
September 17, 2012 8:11 am
Found this in my cat’s water bowl last night (September 16, 2012). Thought it was beautiful and just trying to identify it.
Signature: J. Childs

Railroad Worm

Dear J. Childs,
Your letter did not indicate if the creature was still alive or if it had drowned.  If the former, and if it is still in your possession, you might want to treat yourself to a little light show.  This is a Railroad Worm or Glowworm.  It will glow in the dark, producing a greenish bioluminescence that is quite impressive.

It was still alive and I wanted it to stay that way, so I let it go last night!  RATS!  Wish I could find it again to see it glow!  What type plants might I find this on?  I have some mints of different kinds near the area where it was found.  Would that be a possibility?

Glowworms are predators so you will not necessarily find them on specific plants.  The example from our archive was feeding on a millipede.  This University of Florida IFAS webpage also indicates they feed on Millipedes and it has much information on Glowworm biology.

Location: Georgia

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