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Hummingbird and Butterfly Gardening: Caterpillar I.D. please.

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Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

December 1, 2012
9:11 AM

Post #9346886

I was totally taken by surprise to have found this cat. while working in my garden today. Could you help I.D. I've been cutting back my straying sweet autumn clematis; and found this one hiding on the wilted vine. Is it wandering off (away from its host plant) to find a place to pupate? Thanks for your help.

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vitrsna

vitrsna
Colima
Mexico
(Zone 11)

December 1, 2012
2:06 PM

Post #9347047

Hi Lily...I'm not familiar with this caterpillar but it could be, you might want to explore the Anisota genus of moths. Their food source is Oak. Possibly species senatoria or piegleri. It's just a guess and hopefully someone more knowledgeable will show up and help out.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

December 1, 2012
2:26 PM

Post #9347062

Thank you vitrsna, I'll do some searching. We've many kind of oaks around the area. So it could be one of those in the genus.
Anniesfollies
Carlsbad, CA
(Zone 10b)

December 1, 2012
6:40 PM

Post #9347241

Could it be a Haploa clymene, larva?

Here's a link to a picture: http://www.discoverlife.org/mp/20q?guide=Caterpillars

I'm new to this forum so maybe you all know about the website that I just found. It is so cool! I was able to put in color, patterns/markings, hair, etc. and somehow there was a place to mark which state. Then I clicked on search and up this one came.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

December 1, 2012
7:08 PM

Post #9347259

Thank you for the link Anniesfollies. That does look like the Haploa clymene larva. Wow. Thanks again. It's a beautiful moth indeed. I released the caterpillar in the garden, hopefully it will find its way back to its host plant.
steadycam3
Houston Heights, TX
(Zone 9a)

December 1, 2012
7:30 PM

Post #9347276

Wow, that is a gorgeous moth! Im glad Texas is included in its range. I'd like to see one.

vitrsna

vitrsna
Colima
Mexico
(Zone 11)

December 1, 2012
7:57 PM

Post #9347287

Hi Lily...this moth feeds on Eupatorium, Oak, Peach and Willow. So maybe you have one or more of these in your garden or near and can help the little guy back to a food source.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

December 2, 2012
6:26 AM

Post #9347482

Hi vitrsna, oh yes, I've all those plant in the garden, except Eupatorium. I'm going to look and see if I can find the 'little guy' again to help back on the food source today. Many thanks.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

December 3, 2012
5:05 AM

Post #9348440

It was a success. I found the little guy on the duranta bush that I haven't yet moved inside. So I moved it to my peach tree which has very few leaves left. I'll keep an eye out for the little one, and move it to some of the oak seedlings if need be. Thanks all for your helpful information. Happy butterfly gardening.

vitrsna

vitrsna
Colima
Mexico
(Zone 11)

December 3, 2012
7:14 AM

Post #9348549

O, that's wonderful Lily! Congratulations to you and to the little guy. :-D The successes feel so good and help to make up for the times when things do not go so well (which feel sooo bad) so i am happy to hear your news.
steadycam3
Houston Heights, TX
(Zone 9a)

December 3, 2012
4:38 PM

Post #9349037

I'll be rooting for you as well, Lily. I recently raised a long tailed skipper who died shortly after eclosing. That feels so bad. I hope you have better luck. That is an awesomely beautiful moth.

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

December 3, 2012
6:55 PM

Post #9349169

Thanks to both. I sure can relate to the feeling of sadness when we didn't succeed. I lost many monarch larvae this season due to some type of parasites ( I suspected) That's one reason, I'm taking a chance with mother nature...with this little one. Today, I saw the caterpillar again, only it munched away two Peach leaves...and worked its way further up the tree. :)

Lily_love

Lily_love
Central, AL
(Zone 7b)

December 3, 2012
7:09 PM

Post #9349183

Looking up the tall branch earlier during day while I was outside. The weather was beautiful here today perfect for me to plant spring bulbs, in the 70'ish F.

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