Posts Tagged ‘Nicotiana sylvestris’

Tobacco Budworm

These caterpillars are feeding on flowering tobacco (Nicotiana sylvestris)

There’s an obvious reason why these moth caterpillars are called tobacco budworms!

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Each one feeds with it head in a hole that it made in a bud.

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The caterpillars vary in size and

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and in color.

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Their feeding method keeps me chuckling every time I’m among them.

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Obviously, nature has a sense of humor too.

Tobacco Hornworm

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The easiest way to find well-camouflaged caterpillars is to first find their droppings.


Two tobacco hornworms fed on the same  flowering tobacco plant (Nicotiana sylvestris) plant in my moon garden. The caterpillars can be a challenge to find, even after finding them the first time. I included this picture because it shows the pattern “veeing” down its back.

IMG_9180 cropThe small black spots along its side are the spiracles where they breath.

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The “eye” is a fake eye on its prothoracic shield.

Two caterpillars were on this same plant. One was gone the next morning, and the other the next morning. I probably won’t see the sphinx moths after they emerge.