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Buck Moth Caterpillar

Family Saturniidae


Buck Moth Caterpillar (Hemileuca maia)

Buck Moth Caterpillar (Hemileuca maia)

Susan Ellis, Bugwood.org

About this Caterpillar:

These black and white caterpillars use branching spines to fend off predators. Like the io moth caterpillars, these buck moth caterpillars live gregariously in their early instars. David L. Wagner, author of Caterpillars of Eastern North America notes that a sting he received from a buck moth caterpillar was still visible 10 days later, with hemorrhages at the sites where spines had penetrated his skin.

Where It's Found:

Oak forests from Florida to Louisiana, north through Missouri and all the way to Maine.

What It Eats:

Oak in early instars; older caterpillars will chew on most any woody plant


Giant Silkworm and Royal Moths (Family Saturniidae)


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