The IO moth, Automeris io, is a colorful fuzzy looking bug. I
happened across this one, Wendy helped me identify it, and all of the
sudden my butterfly site
expanded to include
I think these are IO Moth Eggs. The tree they were on was too far
from home for me to go back and observe the hatchlings.
Close-up, the IO Moth caterpillar looks like it has a bunch of tiny sea
urchins stuck to its back. The spines are dark at the tips. This is
definitely a hands-off bug!
This is the stinging IO Moth caterpillar. They STING, so do not touch
Chris tells me, "I can confirm from first-hand experience that the Io moth caterpillar's sting is painful."
Butterfly caterpillars, as far as I know, are generally fine to handle; mine
have never bothered me (get your own safety advice, don't count
on mine!), but some moth caterpillars,
like this one, are supposed to be very uncomfortable to handle, or
downright painful as Chris tells us these are. These are hands off
Luis, thanks for helping me sort out my