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As the official last full day of summer comes to an end in the Northern Hemisphere, I decided to share my favorite find of the Summer, a lime-green caterpillar with vibrant spines and festive colors, Euclea delphinii. These caterpillars are members of the family Limacodidae, known as Slug Moths. The larvae of Limacodidae are likened to slugs because of their lethargic movement and head being hidden by the body, only to be shown when the caterpillar raises its body.
Found on a shed; reclocated to larval hostplant of Oak (Quercus sp.). In David L. Wagner's guide, "Caterpillars of Eastern North America," he states the larvae grow to 2 centimeters, so it is likely this caterpillar may be near its full growth.
Lifer! This find was a total surprise and absolutely spectacular! I thought I was seeing things when I saw this on a shed from a distance, but as I approached my jaw dropped in amazement. I gently nudged it on to a leaf without touching the spines (reactions very from a small nuisance to excruciating pains). The spines break off and release irritant chemicals into the body.
Lat: 43.92, Long: -70.58
Spotted on Aug 12, 2013
Submitted on Sep 22, 2013
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