One of our readers sent us two photos of two different caterpillars resting on some plants. He said he found four of the brown caterpillars, and one of the black. He wants to know if we know what type of caterpillars they are, and what type of butterfly they will mature into. Here are the images:
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We believe this caterpillar is an Geometer moth larva, or an inchworm (also known as a cankerworm, looper, or spanworm). Inchworms mature into Geometer moths, of which there are over 3o,000 species. Inchworms tend to be green, brown, or grey, and they protect themselves from predators by camouflaging into their surroundings and resembling sticks or twigs. Inchworms typically eat leaves and fruit. Some people consider inchworms to be pests because when they inhabit a tree in large numbers, they can do serious damage to the foliage. However, other people find inchworms really helpful in teaching science to young students.
Here is the other caterpillar:
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This caterpillar is black with a brown stripe lining the entire length of its back. On the brown stripe there are seven black dots. It appears to have smooth texture. Despite the excellent photograph, we don’t know what type of caterpillar this is or what type of butterfly or moth it will eventually turn into. There are more than 20,000 known species of caterpillars that exist around the world, and there are estimated to be many more that have never been identified.
To sum up, one of our readers sent us two photos of caterpillars crawling on some leafs. He wanted to know what kind of caterpillars these are and what type of butterfly they mature into. We are confident that the brown creature is an inchworm. However, we are unable to identify the other caterpillar. If any of our readers recognize this caterpillar, we invite them to share their knowledge in the comments section!