Grey furry caterpillar (Davis' Tussock moth caterpillar)

by Robin Pollard
(Pritchett, CO, USA)

Discovered this caterpillar on our mulberry tree in Southeast Colorado (Pritchett, CO) MUNCHING with hundreds of its brothers and sisters. I care for many black swallowtail and sometimes monarch babies in the garden but this is my whole tree (close to 80 yrs in age) and these guys are asking too much!

Comments for Grey furry caterpillar (Davis' Tussock moth caterpillar)

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Davis' Tussock moth caterpillar
by: Moni

Your caterpillar will turn into a Davis' tussock moth. This is one of the tiger Erebidae. The moths are a light cream color with a few cool orange geometric spots on the wings and an orange body!

Though these are eating a lot of your mulberry tree foliage this year, if it is 80 yrs old, it will be fine. Large trees like that can take a lot of feeding damage and not be affected. If they are defoliated for many years in a row, then you would be concerned. This is part of Nature's cycle.

These caterpillars are also known to eat oak,sumac, and hackberry trees which are from different tree families than the mulberry.

The Davis' tussock moth is found in the southern tier of states in North America. Adult moths fly from July to August.

Best not to handle... some tussock caterpillars can cause a rash to the skin from the tiny hairs.

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