Q: What is this fuzzy caterpillar? My Dad and I found it in some flowers.
A: It’s the caterpillar form of a leopard moth, Ecpantheria scribonia.
Despite its fierce name, the leopard moth does not bite…it just has beautiful spots on it swings.
Likewise, the leopard moth caterpillar is not harmful. It does little damage to landscape plants.
You can see the red rings around its body, which distinguish it from the common black and brown banded wooly bear caterpillar, which turns into an Isabella Tiger Moth, Pyrrharctia isabella.
I’d release the caterpillar back where you found it so it can hide in dead leaves, hibernate over winter and emerge in spring as a beautiful moth.
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