Caterpillar Identification Guide

American Lady (Vanessa virginiensis) caterpillar

Cloudless Sulphur

Genus-Species: Phoebis sennae

Host Plants: The host plant may be partridge pea (Chamaecrista cinerea), sennas (Senna), clovers (Trifolium), or other legumes (Fabaceae).

Habitat: Open areas, including prairies, old fields, roadsides, and gardens.

Comments: The Cloudless Sulphur cannot survive northern winters, and is considered a stray in Wisconsin. The species does not stray to Wisconsin every year, and it should be considered a rare find.

Bog Fritillary, Boloria eunomia

Caterpillar Anatomy: A Tutorial

Caterpillars come in many colors, shapes, and sizes. Some caterpillars are quite hairy, while others are smooth. Despite differences between species, though, all caterpillars share certain morphological features.

Bee Quiz Graphic

Caterpillar Quiz

Take this quick quiz and see how much you know about caterpillars. This quiz is intended for fun, in a random-facts-can-be-cool kind of way.

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Papilio glaucus

How Caterpillars Change Into Butterflies

How does this magic happen? Learn about metamorphosis - the process of transformation from an immature form to an adult bitterfly.