Sunday, April 26, 2009

Armyworm


We're at my mom's this weekend and the neighborhood kids found this incredibly beautiful caterpillar. It was getting dark and I didn't have enough light to get a good photo. So, my brother helped out by taking these GORGEOUS photos! Hopefully, you can enlarge it - he is so colorful and my brother took a great photo! We all decided he looks like a Navajo blanket.


I went online to identify the caterpillar and found out it is a forest tent caterpillar. OK... tent caterpillars are one of the few insects that kind of gross me out. Could this really be a tent caterpillar??? Actually, he behaves a little different than most tent caterpillars and doesn't make a large tent, though he can still be quite destructive. (And, my mom wasn't happy to hear we'd put this caterpillar on her tree!) They are also called "armyworms" because sometimes, after they have completely defoliated a tree (yikes!), they will "march" single file looking for a suitable site.

Thankfully, we only found one and hopefully he doesn't have a lot of brothers & sisters around!

4 comments:

Robin said...

Omg! That is such a beautiful caterpillar. And your brother really did him justice. I enlarged the first one and was amazed.
It's hard to imagine that cute little guy being destructive. Maybe that's one of his defenses. Who'd try to get rid of something so beautiful?

live4evermom said...

Incredible colors and great pictures.

Jimmie said...

Amazing that such a gorgeous creature can be so destructive. But they've got to eat too, right?

Rhonda said...

Wow! you are right. It does look like a Navajo blanket. It is just beautiful, but yes, the destruction they can cause is unreal for such a little thing.

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