We recently received five photos from a reader containing images of different caterpillars. He hopes we will identify them. We will be writing an article for each of these different organisms! This is the first of the caterpillar posts.
This caterpillar has a black and yellow striped body with sporadic yellow hair, a yellow collar, and a black head. We believe that this is a Datana ministra, also known as a yellownecked caterpillar. This caterpillar feeds on shade and fruit trees, such as elm, walnut, birches, and apple trees. Mature larvae are just less than 2 inches, and will eventually develop into reddish brown moths. These caterpillar and moths are found all over the eastern United States, and most larvae are spotted in August and September. Robins and other birds hunt Yellownecked caterpillars, and some parasitic flies prey them on too.
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We hope our reader is satisfied with this description of yellownecked caterpillars!
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