The forgotten caterpillars

Way back in October, I posted a Name these Insects query. And nobody responded.

Actually, 2 people responded — including Mark — who identified the second entry, which was eastern black swallowtail.

Here it is once again.

But not a peep about the other one.

Where were the rest of my entomology geeks?

No one cares about the insects. But I do. I care about insects.

Except the stinkbugs.

They can die.

And I don’t like carpenter bees, because there too many of them. And one crawled into the mailbox and stung me.

Anyway, back to the mystery ‘pillar.

Help! Who am I? Or what am I?

Last chance…

Give up?

The above creature is a “silver spotted skipper caterpillar.”

According to my Deep Throat entomology source, spotted skipper butterflies are common but, “for some reason, we don’t see many of the caterpillars.”

The creepy eyespots are intended to encourage a predator to think twice — and consider that a tasty morsel might bite back.

Oh, and here’s a fun fact: According to Univ of Fla’s entomology webpage, when disturbed, the larvae (the caterpillars) regurgitate a greenish, bitter-tasting, defensive chemical.

So leave these guys alone. Or if you must pester one, keep your mouth shut.

Here’s the finished product:

Name These Insects

I refuse to close the blog this week with a dead farm animal.

So let’s block out that bloated sheep with some funky insects, and name these caterpillars.

I think the second is a no-brainer and the first might be a little tricky, but you be the judge.

Both are Maryland locals, photographed in August and September, respectively.

This first one wasn’t indoors; he was found on a bathmat draped over a porch railing.



Here’s entry #2.


Happy guessing.


Name Another Insect


Here’s a new entry for the recurring, “Name That Insect” contest. Martin spotted this funky fellow in our mudroom.

According to my secret entomology source, this one should be easy-peasy.

Here it is again, with my pudgy pinkie for scale:


Think you know the answer? Post a comment or send me an email.

In other comment-related business, I have a correction to my recent post, “All Before 9 AM.” That entry included photos of a corn snake, which Martin boxed and left in our kitchen. However, a Funny Farm reader named Lee, pointed out that our reptile was not of the “corn” variety, but is actually a “gray rat snake.”


Our snake

Photos suggest that Lee is right. Thanks for setting me straight!


Eastern rat snake in Maryland