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Imperial Catapillar

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Jarrell, Sep 12, 2005.

  1. A friend of mine, who is an avid gardener, called and asked if I'd like to take a picture of a caterpillar that she had found.
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    She says that it is the larvae of the Imperial moth and showed me it's picture in a book she brought along. The picture in her book reminded me very much of a moth I had photographed a couple of years ago. I used the image of that moth in a composite picture of one of my grand daughters.
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    I was a bit surprised at how large it was so I include a picture of it with my friends hand for size reference..
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    The image was made with my D100 and Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 lens.. raw.. 1/160th sec. @ f/22. One flash was used plus a 'fill' card.
    Some may be interested in more about the caterpillar.....
    Imperial Moth Larvae
    Caterpillars are yellow-green (sometimes tan or dark brown) and are covered with short, stiff hairs of light blue-green. The lower body half is hunter green. The spiracles or breathing holes along the sides of the body are large, bright yellow and rimmed in aqua and black. There are four long, sharp, deep yellow spines just behind the head and shorter, sharp spines under the hair. The head is orange-yellow with a black inverted Y in the center. Larvae feed on many trees and shrubs including spruce, pine, oak, maple, sycamore, cherry, birch, alder, elm, sweet gum, sassafras, beech, cedar, and walnut. The larval stage lasts for about 42 days after which the larva burrows down into the ground to pupate and overwinter.

    Adults often emerge in May or June. The female moth is bright yellow and speckled all over with red-brown freckles. Two small circles of red-brown are on each forewing and one on each hindwing. A wavy band, also of the same color, traverses the lower wing and two bands are on the forewings. In males, the forewings are almost covered with the red color except for a triangle at the tip and a small patch near the bottom.
  2. I believe the moth on the shoulder is a Cecropia Moth. The Imperial Moth's markings are more muted.

    I'm no expert but the Cecropia is just too beautiful a creature not to admire. Perhaps someone more knowledgable will jump in and clear things up.

  3. I have no doubt..

    that you are correct, Woody. The only thing I know for sure about moths is that they fly... :smile: I'd like to take a picture of this one when it becomes a moth, whatever type it is.
  4. Thanks for sharing your story and your image Jarrell. Course I like the one of your grand daughter best of all.
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