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The caterpillar is primarily green with brown at either end and a prominent white-ringed brown dot in the center which resembles a saddle.
The larva feeds on a large variety of plants. In Florida and Alabama, it feeds on ornamental palms such as the Manila palm (Adonidia merrillii). This one found in South Georgia.
It has a pair of fleshy horns at either end. These and most of the rest of the body bear urticating hairs that secrete an irritating venom. Contact with the hairs causes a painful, swollen rash and sometimes nausea in humans. The hairs should be removed from the skin immediately to prevent more venom spread. The cocoon may also have irritating hairs and hairs from the larva can fall on surrounding objects.