Project Noah

Project Noah is a tool to explore and document wildlife and a platform to harness the power of citizen scientists everywhere.

Join Project Noah Today

Spitfire caterpillar

Doratifera vulnerans


The final version of the D.vulnerans caterpillar - white-grey body with sets of red-orange tufts and yellow stinging hairs at either end and a turquoise, yellow and black saddle mid-dorsal.


Wetlands reserve on small eucalyptus stems.


For the first time I have noticed the very fine hairs hanging down from the false legs shapes mid body - pic 3. What purpose? In pic 2 you can just see the tiny fine tips of the stinging spines. The yellow spines usually stay inside the orange bases but shoot out instantly if the caterpillar is disturbed. There seems very few of these around this year. This one was just about to turn itself into a cup. The twisted grey shades are an indicator that the changes are beginning. The next step in the pupation process is here then the moth can be seen here

No species ID suggestions

72 Comments (1–25)

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 10 months ago

Thanks Christine. :)

Christine Y.
Christine Y. 10 months ago

Wow, that's beautiful! Great spotting!

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway a year ago

Thanks Neil and ceejayalyssa

ceejayalyssa a year ago

such a pretty creature!

naross a year ago

What a wicked little dude, and not known for his sense of humour, I'll bet. A fabulous photo, Argy, and great spotting. Nice one :-)

Argy Bee
Argy Bee a year ago

Thanks Anne Marie and cullenb1.

That's a crazy caterpillar - great spotting!

cullenb1 a year ago


Argy Bee
Argy Bee a year ago

Thanks Maria, Gerardo and Stephen.

StephenSolomons a year ago

So beautifully portrayed and photographed as well

Extraordinary Mark congratulations :)

Maria dB
Maria dB a year ago

Wonderful series, Mark, and congratulations on your SOTD!

Argy Bee
Argy Bee a year ago

Thanks all again for the wonderful comments. Sorry I can't find the 'like' buttons. :)

Fantastic Series (all of them) great work. Thank you for sharing the stages of this moth in Series. Congratulations on the SOTD!! Very well deserved, Argy Bee.

MayraSpringmann a year ago


Fyn  Kynd
Fyn Kynd a year ago

Awesome spotting, congratulations Mark!

fakecalling a year ago

Praise the God!

Congrats Argy!
Such an impressive Caterpillar!

empidonax a year ago

Wonderful images!

elaphrus a year ago

What a fantastic image!

Arun a year ago

Wonderful spotting ... Congratulations !!

Mrinal Shekhar
Mrinal Shekhar a year ago

very nice

ceherzog a year ago

What a find Argy...a well-deserved SOTD! Great photography too!

Congratulations Argy !

Carol Snow Milne
Carol Snow Milne a year ago

Congratulations on SOTD. This is so awesome!

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Lat: -37.90, Long: 145.28

Spotted on Mar 22, 2013
Submitted on Mar 22, 2013

Related spottings

Mottled Cup Moth Mottled Cup Moth Caterpillar Cupmoth pupal case Mottled cup moth

Nearby spottings

Saunders' Case Moth Maned duck Steel-blue Sawfly Brown Darkling Beetle