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4256Re: [Indianmoths] Id this caterpillar from Yeoor, Thane

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  • Purnendu
    May 5, 2013
      Hi Shyam,
      any luck with the caterpillar id? I agree that they don't look hairy enough for Lasiocampid cats. It was just the way they were lying flat that reminded me of some lappet moth cats.


      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Wednesday, April 24, 2013 6:46 AM
      Subject: Re: [Indianmoths] Id this caterpillar from Yeoor, Thane


      Hi Purnendu,

      If you meant lasiocampidae caterpillars, then it does not seem to match. The lasiocampidae cats are all hairy. I have a fairly good record of these types of moths.
      Long ago, I had photographed a sequence involving tent caterpillars and a wasp. The wasp was immobilising one cat at a time, then carrying away a previously immobilised cat and returning to take away the last immobilised cat . The cats understood what was happening and were frantically trying to build a defensive tent around themselves.
      I could post it, but will involve lot of images and will far exceed the specified file size.

      From: Purnendu <purnendu@...>
      To: Indianmoths@...
      Sent: Tuesday, April 23, 2013 1:29 PM
      Subject: Re: [Indianmoths] Id this caterpillar from Yeoor, Thane

      Hi Shyam,
      I am guessing these are Lasciocampid caterpillars, but I am really not sure.
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Sunday, April 21, 2013 4:50 PM
      Subject: [Indianmoths] Id this caterpillar from Yeoor, Thane

      Ornamental tree trunk spider (Herennia multipunctata)_On  Stereospermum  suaveolens tree _Yeoor

      I presume these are moth caterpillars.

      There were a number of these cats all over the tree trunk. And we found at least 4 varieties of spiders on the tree though recorded only this variety feeding on the cats. The photo shows 2 males (smaller ones) and one female spider.

      These caterpillars seemed extremely sluggish and were not responding to the actions of the male spiders at all. On the other hand, the cat being eaten was alive for very long even though part of it seemed badly decomposed.

      When we probed one of the motionless cats with a stick, it jerked violently. It fell on the tree root and lay perfectly motionless. However when probed with a twig, it jumped violently again. It was all a very unusual sight.

      The tree was identified by Dr Mangala Borkar.

      -shyam ghate

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