How do you identify a butterfly larva?
A caterpillar is the larval stage of a moth or butterfly. It is the second part of their four-stage life cycle (egg, larva, pupa, adult). Caterpillars have long, worm-like bodies with six true legs. They can also have a variable number of stumpy false legs (called prolegs), which help them to move and cling to things.
How long does it take butterfly larvae to hatch?
Females lay eggs 5 to 7 days after emerging from the chrysalis. The eggs hatch after three days. Caterpillars emerge from the eggs and eat for 10 to 12 days before forming chrysalides. Adult butterflies emerge from the chrysalides in 7 to 10 days.
Where do butterflies lay their larvae?
It can vary depending on species and other conditions. Some butterflies lay their eggs on the top of leaves and others lay them on the underside. In my experience, Black Swallowtails and Gulf Fritillaries tend to lay eggs singularly on the top of the leaves. Monarchs often lay them singularly on the underside.
How can you tell a moth caterpillar from a butterfly caterpillar?
Butterfly caterpillars always have 5 pairs of prolegs and are covered with fine hairs. Moth caterpillars may have either 5 pairs or prolegs (often fewer) or hairs, but not both. Most caterpillars are green or brown, and have color patterns that help camouflage them.
How do you know if a caterpillar will turn into a moth or butterfly?
A fuzzy or hairy caterpillar ambling through your garden is a moth-to-be. Butterfly caterpillars aren’t fuzzy or hairy, but they may have spikes. However, if the caterpillar has smooth skin, it could be either.
How do you feed butterfly larvae?
You must provide food for such larvae, or you wont have the adults! Other herbaceous plants that provide food for larvae include wormwood, hollyhock and other mallow relatives, cabbage and related cole crops, sunflower, alfalfa, and clover. Some shrubs for feeding larvae include privet, lilac, and some viburnums.
What time of year do caterpillars cocoon?
Hanging Out as Pupae Caterpillars who hatch in the summer often have time to mature during the warm season. Some have time to pupate and emerge as adult butterflies or moths, but others take advantage of the protection of the cocoon or chrysalis to get them through the cold winters.
What are butterflies eggs like?
The shape of butterfly eggs can vary greatly from family to family, but most are pale yellow or green in colour, although the colour can darken before hatching. Just before hatching the young larva can sometimes be seen curled up inside the transparent eggshell.
Where do you find butterfly caterpillars?
Where To Find Caterpillars. Look for caterpillars on the underside of leaves of their host plants out of the way of predators. Some will hide during the day in shelters of leaves and grass and only feed at night. They are fascinating to watch as they feed on their host plant.