Watch it turn itself inside out! This whole process took approx. 3 hours. 1. The caterpillar finds a node on a branch of about 6mm thick, chews off some bark, and attaches some silk to the timber below. It then begins to wind silk around its head swinging it's head in figure eights. 2. The silk is worked from the inside down over the body. In pic#2 you can see the black head through the silk. 3. The body curls up backwards as the silk is extended. 4. The last parts to remain open are the spiky tufts with the stinging hairs so it might be difficult to attack these creatures even during this vulnerable phase. 5. The spiky tufts are finally brought into the centre, retracted and covered. 6. The silk is continually worked from the inside until the cocoon is a single colour and opaque. The caterpillar can be seen moving within the cocoon for several hours afterwards seemingly to adjust its position and to 'shrink' the cocoon onto itself. The cocoon then changes colour and hardens over a couple of hours to a brown-grey just like a gum nut.
Moth (martinl)... http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/796... Final instar... http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/964... Earlier instar (Leuba)... http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/944... With any luck we will see the moth emerge in some weeks. October 17 this one finally emerged as a moth here... http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/154...