Caterpillar Identification Guide

American Lady (Vanessa virginiensis) caterpillar

Common Wood-Nymph

Genus-Species: Cercyonis pegala

Host Plants: Grasses including Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii), Grove Bluegrass (Poa alsodes), Fowl Bluegrass (Poa palustris), and Woodland Bluegrass (Poa saltuensis)

Habitat: Grasslands and open fields near woodlands. Prairie restorations are often hot spots for this species.

Comments: This is by far the most common butterfly in the state on a regular basis.

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.

Bee Quiz Graphic

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.