Thursday, June 9, 2011

Gone Fishing! and Other Fun Stuff

We found this awesome cecropia moth caterpillar on our apple tree. We actually have found 2 of them. I don't like apple tree pests, but I'm willing to share a few leaves with a beautiful creature like this. The caterpillars are huge, about 4 1/2 inches long and about an inch thick. They could grow up to 6 inches before they cocoon. What's really cool, is that they only produce one generation each year. That means that when and if we can get it to cocoon, it won't emerge until next June! According to our research, they will cocoon and spin a soft brown silky cocoon. Then a few weeks later it will transform into a dark brown, hard shelled cocoon. In the fall, we should store the cocoon in a ziploc bag in the refrigerator and take it out in the spring. Isn't that just amazing?

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