Sunday, September 5, 2010

Tersa Sphinx Moth Caterpillar

Marked with false eyes to emulate predator instead of prey, the Tersa sphinx moth caterpillar is well protected. His color blends with his surroundings making him almost invisible. Trying my best to remove them, I missed one and he kept munching away on the pentas and at this stage has turned gray. Retracting his head and mouth parts when disturbed, makes its false eyes appear even larger.

Without spinning a cocoon, it buries just beneath the loose soil and leaf litter to pupate. These moths are unusual in that they are day feeders of honeysuckle and four o'clocks for example.

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