As our last post for National Moth Week, which is going on now, let’s take a look at some caterpillars that turn into moths.
1. Family Saturnidae
Remember these large moths from our moth identification post I? As you might imagine, the caterpillars are also large when they are mature.
Take the captive-reared cecropia moth caterpillars in this video, for example.
They will form a cocoon and then eventually emerge as a cecropia moth.
(Public domain photograph of cecropia moth by Tom Peterson, retrieved from Wikimedia.)
2. Family Sphingidae – called sphinx moths, hawk moths or hummingbird moths
Sphinx moth larvae or caterpillars are sometimes called hornworms.
3. Family Erebidae -Tussock and Tiger moths
4. Family Noctuidae – the noctuids or owlet moths (Moth Identification II post)
Noctuid caterpillars are often mostly bare.
Note: many of the looper caterpillars belong to the family Geometridae (which means “earth measurer.”)
There are many, many more fascinating caterpillars that turn into moths.
Have you seen any interesting caterpillars lately?
- Life cycle of the moth post
- Samuel Jaffe has photographs and videos of moth caterpillars.
- Tom Murray has an extensive page of moth caterpillar photographs.