Can anyone ID this caterpillar please?

Discussion in 'Butterfly / Moth' started by bradders33, Mar 3, 2013.

  1. bradders33

    bradders33 New Seed

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    Hi everyone,

    Hope you are all well on this lovely and pleasant day!

    I just found a gorgeous little caterpillar on my back door step.

    There's no plants near my back door, so I am unsure where s/he came from.

    I would like to keep him / her until s/he turns in to a moth or butterfly, but I know it's important that s/he eats and eats before pupating.

    As I don't know what species s/he is, I don't know what to feed him / her.

    I've tried a few salad leaves, but s/he isn't interested.

    Can anyone help? Thank you.
     
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  3. bradders33

    bradders33 New Seed

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  4. carolyn

    carolyn Strong Ash

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    Where do yopu live? that will help narrow it down to a specific area. Some caterpillars are in small areas or specific continents. It doesn't look like any one I have ever seen or noticed a picture of. But I am leaning towards a moth and not a good one, either.
     
  5. bradders33

    bradders33 New Seed

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    Hi,

    I live in Milton Keynes.

    What makes a moth "not a good one?" I don't mind moths!
     



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  6. toni

    toni Mistress of Garden Junque Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    Put it back outside, it will take care of itself as it's ancestors have done for thousands of years.
    At this time of the year it was probably coming out of hibernation, possibly somewhere around the back of your house.
    Some species hibernate as caterpillars then in spring come out to eat briefly before spinning it's cocoon, then in 2-3 weeks appear as a moth. So if it's in captivity then it can't eat to complete it's life cycle and most likely will die soon.

    Each species of caterpillar has specific foods they eat and they do not eat anything else that's why it won't eat the lettuce.

    They can travel quite a ways when looking for a warm place to hibernate, so the host plant doesn't have to be close to the back door. What types of trees, shrubs, flowers do you have in the backyard, that could help ID it by what it might have been eating.
     
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  7. eileen

    eileen Resident Taxonomist Staff Member Moderator Plants Contributor

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    Yours may be a Ruby Tiger moth - check it out on the net and see what you think. :-D If it is then they eat heather, some grasses, dock, dandelions and other weeds.

    If not this website may help you to ID your caterpillar:

    http://www.giffbeaton.com/caterpillars.htm
     

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