Wednesday 25 August 2010

Butterflies and Moths (7): Caterpillars - fur, hair and bristles!

The Peacock (or possibly Small Tortoiseshell?) caterpillars above
were spotted on nettles
beside the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path in August 2009.

These furry things above are the barbed hairs of the caterpillars
of the native Brown-Tail Moth (Euproctis Chrysorrhoea).
We saw them at Spurn Point, Yorkshire, in April 2009.

Our car park ticket informed us that the adults
emerge in spring from their white webs
to feed on Sea Buckthorn.
Apparently they shed their skins,
releasing the hairs before pupating and taking wing.

Early September 2009:
we watched this Fox Moth caterpillar crawling about on Raasay,
the small island between Skye and Applecross
on which Calum built his road.

You can see another furry caterpillar on the island
if you follow this link and scroll down.

I spotted this Fox Moth caterpillar (above)
at Hartland Point in Devon,
on 16 April 2010.

You might like to look at the Marsland Moth blog,
since Marsland is closeby,
on the Devon-Cornish border.

This caterpillar
(below, with detail above)
was much close to home,
at Oxwich on Gower.

I noticed it on 22 August 2009.
It is as yet unidentified!

P.S. 2012 ... a Fox Moth caterpillar?

The yellow and black creature below
only just qualifies for this post of hairy crawlers!
It is a Burnet Moth caterpillar
(and I plan to do a post on this moth soon).

I photographed the caterpillar
at Mwnt in Cardiganshire back in late May 2010.

A Knot Grass caterpillar (above and below)
on St Columba's fascinating inland island (photo here),
situated in the Snizort River on Skye.
The adult looks like this.

The caterpillar below was spotted way back on 5 August 2006
at the National Botanic Garden of Wales.

Do take a look at Rosie's Vapourer moth over at Leaves 'n Bloom here.


Rosie Nixon Fluerty said...

Those are really colourful caterpillars Caroline. I found a vaporour a few days ago (on lnb blog) but had to get the ID from the helpful folks over at Wild about Britain forum.

donnie said...

cool pics - caterpillars always seem quite cheerful :))

Mary said... really found the caterpillares! I don't see a lot of them and don't recognize which butterfly or moth the belong to except 1-2. They have such interesting colors and textures.

Crafty Green Poet said...

what a lovely lot of caterpillars, the Knot Grass is particularly striking

Anonymous said...

You got some amazing shots! Although I photograph caterpillars, seeing so many in one spot would surely give me the creeps!! But the patterns on the yellow one and the Knot Grass are striking!

Em Parkinson said...

Hi Caroline,

I know this is a very old post so you'll be surprised to receive a comment this long afterwards! I write a blog about living here on Dartmoor and this afternoon I photographed the same caterpillar you failed to identify two years ago; the hairy one with the orangey red broken stripes. I came across your post with a Google search for 'hairy caterpillars' and I wondered if you had now identified it and could let me know? My blog is or email is I'd really appreciate it - thank you!

Best wishes,