Friday, May 22, 2015

Underwing Caterpillar

The other day I noticed something strange on one of the garden stepping stones. After poking to see if the object was alive, I discovered that it was a caterpillar. Googling “purple-bellied caterpillar” quickly bought me to the Ilia Underwing moth. This identification is not positive, but likely. Ilia Underwing moths are fond of oaks, and two of these trees grow nearby in our front yard. The moths are found across much of eastern North America as well as California and Arizona. Scott King suggested that I raise the caterpillar to an adult moth, but, when I returned to the stepping stone, the caterpillar disappeared, perhaps eaten by a nearby, hungry robin.

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