Daylilies forum: Please ID this Caterpiller

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Name: Mona
Guntown, Ms (Zone 7b)
I love nature & everything outdoors
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monalisa18
Nov 1, 2011 9:12 PM CST
I have several White Milkweed plants that grow around my daylilies. I've had these Caterpillars on the plants for several years. when I first see them they are about 1 inch long and very small. They are orange with a few black spots. I'm going to attach a picture.

When they get about 3 inches long, I'll go out in the morning and they are all gone. They were there late afternoon before. They eat all the leaves on the Mildweed plant. I've even taken them from one plant to another so they have plenty to eat. It works really good. They just eat the week, nothing else that I know of. This photo was take June 22, 2011. They are here from May through August. I guess new groups hatch out during these months.

Does anyone know what they are?

Thanks Mona


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Name: Michele
Cantonment, FL zone 8b
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tink3472
Nov 2, 2011 6:07 AM CST
I'm not sure what it is. There is supposedly only 4 butterfly caterrpillars that feed on milkweed and yours doesn't look like any of them. Maybe a type of moth caterpillar. You could take the photo or email it to your local agricultural extension office and they would probably know.
[url=www.pensacoladaylilyclub.com]www.pensacoladaylilyclub.com[/url]
Name: Mona
Guntown, Ms (Zone 7b)
I love nature & everything outdoors
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monalisa18
Nov 2, 2011 10:50 AM CST
I thought at first they were monarchs because I have them on my orange milk weed. Then my brain said, nope they are not black and white. I guess the orange and black caterpillar had my brain confused. Once I thought about this, I tried searching for them but just can't find anything.

I think I will send it to Ext service. I was a Master Gardener for about 5 years, they have some great services at the Ext Office. More than most people realize. Thanks Michele and blessings, Mona
Name: Margaret
Near Kamloops, BC, Canada (Zone 3a)
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mcash70
Nov 2, 2011 1:56 PM CST
I think it is a tobacco worm, they eat all sorts of plants, flower buds, and they change color depending on what they eat.
Name: Ric
Cincinnati, Oh
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Henryr10
Nov 2, 2011 6:40 PM CST
Mona what part of the country?
Do they look the same all thru development?

Ric
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Nov 2, 2011 6:52 PM CST
I have never seen anything on a milkweed other than a Monarch. Surprised to see your brown caterpillers.
Name: Margaret
Near Kamloops, BC, Canada (Zone 3a)
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mcash70
Nov 2, 2011 7:41 PM CST
monalisa 18, check out DG bugfiles, tobacco bud worms.
Name: stephanie king
cut bank, MT z 3a-4b
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rebloomnut
Nov 2, 2011 10:30 PM CST
Ric ir Henryr10-Love the Racoon. Looks like a mean one Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Mona
Guntown, Ms (Zone 7b)
I love nature & everything outdoors
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monalisa18
Nov 3, 2011 2:39 PM CST
Ric, I see them in May,June and maybe even early July. The first time I see them they are about 1 inch long, when they leave maybe 3 inches long and they stay very slim. They ususally stay around 2 weeks at a time here in NE MS, Guntown, MS. This is about how long it takes them to eat a big White Milkweed plant. If I move them to another plant before they run out of leaves, they stay about the same on this one. Sometime in their 3rd week or so, they just disappear. No matter if I have 20 or 5 on the plant, I go out one morning and they are gone.

Rita, They are actually an orangish brown, more lite orange. I need to check out to see which mildweed plant I have. It's a wildflower, so I'm not sure. I'll check. I've never seen them on another plant at this stage.

Margaret, I checked out the Tobacco bud worm and it's close, but mine doesn't have hair, nor strips, and the head is different. I saw where TBW change color but mine are always this orangish color eating a green plant.

Now, I'm going to make sure I've stated the right plant. Be back shortly, Mona

Name: Ric
Cincinnati, Oh
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Henryr10
Nov 3, 2011 6:43 PM CST
Dogbane Saucrobotys Moth Caterpillar

http://www.flickr.com/photos/pcoin/3555498483/

http://www.helpfulgardener.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=8933
Name: Mona
Guntown, Ms (Zone 7b)
I love nature & everything outdoors
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monalisa18
Nov 3, 2011 7:03 PM CST
You got it Ric! Thanks so much. I read what I found by the photo's and ID of this moth but I didn't see where it is a pest or not. Do you know. It would be very easy to hand pick and kill these but I never do this if I think they are good for anything. I live and let live if at all possible. Even when it causes me a little extra work.

Thanks for all you hard work and blessings, Mona
Name: Ric
Cincinnati, Oh
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Art Cat Lover Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters
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Henryr10
Nov 3, 2011 7:23 PM CST
You are Welcome!
Glad to help.

Julie steered me to your Post.

Don't see much on them.
So I'd say they are neutral.
See if Bugfiles over at DG has anything on them.

Ric
Name: Juli
(Zone 5b)
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daylily
Nov 3, 2011 7:26 PM CST
Thanks, Ric! I thought you would know!
Name: Ric
Cincinnati, Oh
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Art Cat Lover Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters
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Henryr10
Nov 4, 2011 4:12 AM CST
Not so much know as search well.....lol!

Try using Bing as a Search Engine.
Place South, Color Orange or Brown, Caterpillar, smooth... leave out the food (milkweed)
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Nov 5, 2011 5:55 PM CST
Interesting! I guess if that species hasn't found my own milkweeds in all these years, it must not exist here.
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Ric
Cincinnati, Oh
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Art Cat Lover Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Region: Ohio Tropicals
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Henryr10
Nov 5, 2011 7:55 PM CST
Linda from the way they chewed thru those plants I'd say that's a good thing! lol!
We do have Dogbane here so I guess I'll give it a harder look next year.
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Nov 5, 2011 8:18 PM CST
Yes...but the Swamp Milkweed Leaf Beetles we have here are just as bad or worse!
I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. E. B.White
Integrity can never be taken. It can only be given, and I wasn't going to give it up to these people. Gary Mowad
Name: Mona
Guntown, Ms (Zone 7b)
I love nature & everything outdoors
Daylilies Dog Lover
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monalisa18
Nov 5, 2011 8:51 PM CST
Ric, I'm rather new to the site and just gotta know, is the raccoon yours?? I chuckle everytime I see it. It reminds me of some of the attitudes that our cat has. Mona
Name: Ric
Cincinnati, Oh
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Art Cat Lover Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Region: Ohio Tropicals
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Henryr10
Nov 5, 2011 8:57 PM CST
No Mona it's not but I have raised then before as rescues.
I just thought it a funny Avatar.

Here's one of our neighborhood possums though
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