Sunday, 27 March 2016

Scarlet Tiger caterpillar observation

Found my first Scarlet Tiger caterpillar this afternoon, curled up as I was weeding. I usually see them about this time of year on warm days on stems of plants that aren't their foodplant, usually a couple of feet up. I've found them in the past on rose suckers, pear suckers, and rosemary. I assume they are sunning themselves? I've seen them go up and then shortly after they descend.

This one was smaller than I usually see them - whether it's because they are smaller this year or if it's only the bigger ones that climb up I don't know.

As far as I can tell they are feeding on Herb Bennett, Geum urbanum - I've found them in several places over the years and that was more or less the only thing growing there. Previously I've found them on nettle and another time I think one was feeding on forget-me-not which seems to have now died out in the garden.


  1. Interesting observation, Mark. In Bucks they're generally associated with either Green Alkanet or the traditional Comfrey. I've had the adult moth in the garden several times since 2009 but have never seen larvae locally, despite the fact that Forget-me-not and Nettle grow as weeds here!

  2. Interesting. Another observation and this might be a reflection that Herb Bennett tends to be at the margins of the garden is that I've found them under cordoned pears, at the foot of walls of various aspects, on the top of walls.


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