Caterpillar Identification Guide

American Lady (Vanessa virginiensis) caterpillar

Spring Azure

Genus-Species: Celastrina ladon

Host Plants: Flowers of a variety of woody shrubs and occasionally herbs including dogwood (Cornus florida), New Jersey tea (Ceanothus americana), meadowsweet (Spiraea salicifolia), and Collinsia.

Habitat: Openings and edges of deciduous woods, old fields, wooded freshwater marshes and swamps.

Comments: The Spring Azure caterpillar is variable in color: shades of green, brown, and pinkish green. Pale, lateral bands on each back segment allow this caterpillar to blend perfectly with the "true" flowers at the center of a dogwood blossom.

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.

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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.

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