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Tobacco hornworm with braconid wasp pupates.

20190826 - Newtown, PA

 

Female braconid wasps lay eggs inside tobacco hornworm caterpillars which hatch into larvae. The larvae then feed on the inside of the caterpillar until they are ready to pupate - then eat through the skin and spin cocoons on it's outside.

 

Manduca quinquemaculata - Manduca sexta - common names: adult - Carolina sphinx moth, tobacco hawk moth; larvae - tobacco hornworm and goliath worm. Closely related to, and often confused with, the tomato hornworm.

 

Braconid wasp - Cotesia congregates - a type of parasitic wasp.

 

DSC_0192_crop2-66r95q.jpg

Adult is known as Carolina sphinx moth and the tobacco hawk moth.

Los Osos, California

(Thanks to Linda for inviting us to her amazing garden/home.)

 

This caterpillar is often confused with Manduca quinquemaculata, the Five-spotted Hawkmoth, whose caterpillar is known as a Tomato Hornworm. "This confusion arises because caterpillars of both species have similar morphologies and feed on the foliage of various plants from the family Solanaceae, so either species can be found on tobacco or tomato leaves. Because of this, the plant on which the caterpillar is found does not indicate its species. "-Wikipedia

If you’ve ever grown tomatoes, chances are good that you’ve dealt with these green caterpillar pests. There are two main garden pest species, tomato hornworms and tobacco hornworms, which can be found in most regions of the U.S. and in southern Canada. Both species can ruin your tomato crop in record time! They also feed on other plants in the Solanaceae (nightshade) family: eggplants, peppers, tobacco, and potatoes. They blend in quite easily with the green foliage and feed non-stop, creating spotty and chewed leaves and fruit.

Hornworms can be up to 5 inches long—which can be quite a shock when you first come across one! They do the most damage in the caterpillar—or larval—stage. They are pale green with white and black markings, plus a horn-like protrusion stemming from their rear. (Don’t worry, they aren’t able to sting or bite!) The caterpillar also has eight V-shaped stripes on its green body. Tomato hornworms come from a mottled brown-gray moth.

Oruga de la gusano del tabaco.

Гусеница Бражника табачного.

 

Tobacco hornworm it is closely related to and often confused with the very similar tomato hornworm. The larvae of these species can be distinguished by their lateral markings: Tomato hornworms have eight V-shaped white markings with no borders; tobacco hornworms have seven white diagonal lines with a black border. Additionally, tobacco hornworms have red horns, while tomato hornworms have dark blue or black horns.

 

South Carolina, USA

Adult is known as Carolina sphinx moth and the tobacco hawk moth.

Los Osos, California

(Thanks to Linda for inviting us to her amazing garden/home.)

 

This caterpillar is often confused with Manduca quinquemaculata, the Five-spotted Hawkmoth, whose caterpillar is known as a Tomato Hornworm. "This confusion arises because caterpillars of both species have similar morphologies and feed on the foliage of various plants from the family Solanaceae, so either species can be found on tobacco or tomato leaves. Because of this, the plant on which the caterpillar is found does not indicate its species. "-Wikipedia

Adult is known as Carolina sphinx moth and the tobacco hawk moth.

Los Osos, California

(Thanks to Linda for inviting us to her amazing garden/home.)

 

This caterpillar is often confused with Manduca quinquemaculata, the Five-spotted Hawkmoth, whose caterpillar is known as a Tomato Hornworm. "This confusion arises because caterpillars of both species have similar morphologies and feed on the foliage of various plants from the family Solanaceae, so either species can be found on tobacco or tomato leaves. Because of this, the plant on which the caterpillar is found does not indicate its species. "-Wikipedia

Tobacco Hornworm Moth (Manduca sexta)

Tobacco hornworm caterpillars (Manduca sexta) going to town on some tomatoes.

OK, so it is not a "tree", but my tomato plant. And I don't know what political leanings this Tobacco Hornworm has. But still...

Spined stilt bugs are an occasional pest of greenhouse tomatoes that can cause flower and fruit abortion and unsightly feeding damage in mature fruits. They are found throughout North America from Quebec and British Columbia south through Hidalgo, Mexico, and have been recorded in every continental U.S. state except Alaska, New Hampshire, and Vermont (though are likely found in the latter two given their presence in surrounding states and provinces). They are brown, medium-sized (0.25–0.33 in, 7–9 mm) insects with thin bodies and long legs and antennae. They can be distinguished from similar looking groups by the antennae, which have four segments, the last of which is enlarged .

 

Spined stilt bugs are also facultative predators, that is, they can survive solely by feeding on plants but live longer and produce more eggs when they can also feed on other insects. They feed primarily on slow-moving or sedentary insects, including aphids, caterpillars and other immature insects, insect eggs, and dead insects trapped in plant trichomes. Spined stilt bugs are beneficial when found in tobacco crops as they feed on tobacco budworm (Heliothis virescens) and tobacco hornworm (Manduca sexta) eggs and larvae and have been reared and released in field tobacco for this purpose. Unfortunately, they also feed on other beneficial insects, including parasitoid wasps, so their use as a beneficial insect may be limited. (Penn State Extension)

 

Nikon D7100

Tokina 100mm f2.8 AT-X AF Pro D Macro

100mm - f16.0 - 1/125 - ISO 100

 

The changeable British weather - with fluctuating temperatures and humidity - has resulted in an extremely unproductive year for rearing caterpillars to produce adult moths and butterflies. At least for me, anyway. So I was delighted when this large male hawkmoth finally emerged from it pupa on 7th August 2017.

 

Manduca sexta is a moth of the family Sphingidae present through much of the American continent. Commonly known as the Carolina Sphinx Moth (as adults) and the Tobacco Hornworm and the Goliath Worm (as larvae), it is closely related to and often confused with the very similar Tomato Hornworm (Manduca quinquemaculata); the larvae of both feed on the foliage of various plants of the family Solanaceae.

 

Thanks for your visit… Any comment you make on my photograph is greatly appreciated and encouraging! But please do not use this image without permission.

The changeable British weather - with fluctuating temperatures and humidity - has resulted in an extremely unproductive year for rearing caterpillars to produce adult moths and butterflies. At least for me, anyway. So I was delighted when this large male hawkmoth finally emerged from it pupa on 7th August 2017.

 

Manduca sexta is a moth of the family Sphingidae present through much of the American continent. Commonly known as the Carolina Sphinx Moth (as adults) and the Tobacco Hornworm and the Goliath Worm (as larvae), it is closely related to and often confused with the very similar Tomato Hornworm (Manduca quinquemaculata); the larvae of both feed on the foliage of various plants of the family Solanaceae.

 

Thanks for your visit… Any comment you make on my photograph is greatly appreciated and encouraging! But please do not use this image without permission.

The adult form is known as the Carolina sphinx moth.

 

I found this one in my garden while pulling weeds. He was actually feeding on the weeds so I let him go unharmed. He's welcome to eat all the weeds he wants.

Tobacco Hornworm Moth (Manduca sexta)

I found this interesting fellow under some grape vines that spread into my back forest. Trying to research what kind of caterpillar this might be, the closest match I could find of a green caterpillar with a horn is a Tobacco Hornworm, but looking at the images, there are differences.

 

If there are any insect experts out there, by all means, enlighten me!

Checking my Monarch cats, I happened to find a HUGE green caterpillar with eyes all the way down the side! The little tail looks like a tomato/tobacco hornworm - but these were a bit different with all those eyes. Found one of my pink pentas totally devoured - and that's how I got the ID (that's pink dianthus blossoms in the b/g). This was the smallest of 3 I found - the size of big green cigars! North Georgia yard

 

Happy Moth Monday!

If you’ve ever grown tomatoes, chances are good that you’ve dealt with these green caterpillar pests. There are two main garden pest species, tomato hornworms and tobacco hornworms, which can be found in most regions of the U.S. and in southern Canada. Both species can ruin your tomato crop in record time! They also feed on other plants in the Solanaceae (nightshade) family: eggplants, peppers, tobacco, and potatoes. They blend in quite easily with the green foliage and feed non-stop, creating spotty and chewed leaves and fruit.

Hornworms can be up to 5 inches long—which can be quite a shock when you first come across one! They do the most damage in the caterpillar—or larval—stage. They are pale green with white and black markings, plus a horn-like protrusion stemming from their rear. (Don’t worry, they aren’t able to sting or bite!) The caterpillar also has eight V-shaped stripes on its green body. Tomato hornworms come from a mottled brown-gray moth.

This caterpillar was crossing the street so I helped him across. It was probably headed for my neighbor's tomato plants.

If you’ve ever grown tomatoes, chances are good that you’ve dealt with these green caterpillar pests. There are two main garden pest species, tomato hornworms and tobacco hornworms, which can be found in most regions of the U.S. and in southern Canada. Both species can ruin your tomato crop in record time! They also feed on other plants in the Solanaceae (nightshade) family: eggplants, peppers, tobacco, and potatoes. They blend in quite easily with the green foliage and feed non-stop, creating spotty and chewed leaves and fruit.

Hornworms can be up to 5 inches long—which can be quite a shock when you first come across one! They do the most damage in the caterpillar—or larval—stage. They are pale green with white and black markings, plus a horn-like protrusion stemming from their rear. (Don’t worry, they aren’t able to sting or bite!) The caterpillar also has eight V-shaped stripes on its green body. Tomato hornworms come from a mottled brown-gray moth.

The ones in this instar stage were about a third the size of the recent mature caterpillars!

Of the three caterpillars, this one was an instar or two behind the others...all three were extremely healthy looking!

I saw and shot this just once, but it's obviously been coming back to feast on the leaves of my tomato plant. It is a BIG larva.

 

Here's some info on how you can tell mine is not a tomato hornworm.

  

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If you’ve ever grown tomatoes, chances are good that you’ve dealt with these green caterpillar pests. There are two main garden pest species, tomato hornworms and tobacco hornworms, which can be found in most regions of the U.S. and in southern Canada. Both species can ruin your tomato crop in record time! They also feed on other plants in the Solanaceae (nightshade) family: eggplants, peppers, tobacco, and potatoes. They blend in quite easily with the green foliage and feed non-stop, creating spotty and chewed leaves and fruit.

Hornworms can be up to 5 inches long—which can be quite a shock when you first come across one! They do the most damage in the caterpillar—or larval—stage. They are pale green with white and black markings, plus a horn-like protrusion stemming from their rear. (Don’t worry, they aren’t able to sting or bite!) The caterpillar also has eight V-shaped stripes on its green body. Tomato hornworms come from a mottled brown-gray moth.

It's Alive, and if it survives, it will transform into a Sphyx Moth.

Hmmmm...the very young instar I posted the other day as a Rustic Sphinx is apparently a 'lifer' Carolina Sphinx for me! I found this middle instar and another one this morning in the same area as the last one...and they are more clearly Carolina Sphinx cats! All three have been on some species of Nightshade...they are also known as Tobacco Hornworms...

August 31, 2019

 

I found what I thought was a tomato worm on my cherry tomato plants. It turns out it is a related species, the tobacco hornworm (Manduca sexta)

 

They both eat tomato plants. My plants are going by anyway, so I left him to his bounty!

 

Brewster, Massachusetts

Cape Cod - USA

 

Photo by brucetopher

© Bruce Christopher 2019

All Rights Reserved

 

...always learning - critiques welcome.

Tools: Canon 7D & iPhone 6s.

No use without permission.

Please email for usage info.

I had to be mindful of the large thorns on this very healthy Nightshade bush, myself...they could do some damage! Yow!

La ventaja de disponer de muchas plantas diferentes es que se va a conseguir una gran diversidad de insectos que se alimentan de ellas. Esta amiga es una gourmet especializada en solanaceas, entre ellas las plantas de tabaco.

Como todavía no he sembrado de esas se las arregló para alimentarse de las Daturas.

 

# 240

The best encounter of the week...this caterpillar species was a 'lifer' for me two years ago at Meaher State Park, and at that time, it was two much younger instars on a small Nightshade...yesterday, it was three stunning nearly mature specimens! I'd been checking a very large, very healthy Nightshade wildflower on a side trail for weeks, hoping some would appear on it...and wow, there they were!

 

Have a great, safe, fun weekend, everyone!

Less than two weeks ago when I found and posted the three maturing Tobacco Hornworms, I wondered if I'd ever see one again...the huge Nightshade they had occupied still had uneaten branches, so I began to check it on each visit to Meaher State Park...I was blown away to find EIGHT new very young instars on it yesterday!

I excitedly texted my caterpillar enthusiast friends Chaney and Karen to come join me for this amazing encounter!

 

This shot shows a very young instar on the left, with a slightly older sibling on the right with better formed physical characteristics and markings! How cool that I found them together for comparison's sake! That's one very busy Nightshade plant!

Checked out my tomato plants the other day...as much to check on the tomatoes as to see if there were any more tobacco hornworms. I just love those beauties. There was damage, but I looked everywhere under the leaves and couldn't find any critters. So back inside I went. Sat down and caught a glimpse of something tiny on my pink shirt. Tiny and green. I thought...no....it can't be. No way.

But it was!

A teenie tiny hornworm...must have JUST hatched. I asked my insect buds about it (Indee and Smkybear) and they gave me some info... With their help and the help of Google, I decided to put it back on the tomato plant.

Isn't that little horn ADORABLE?

Fujifilm X-T2 Provia simulation

Fujifilm X-T2 Provia simulation with no post processing. SOOC

Revenge is sweet. I know that moralists teach us not to gloat in the misery of others, including our enemies. However, I can't help but enjoy that the tobacco hornworms in our garden are heavily parasitized by braconid wasps. The white structures are pupae of the wasp Cotesia congregatus. The larvae have already eaten the viscera of the tobacco hornworm, emerged through the skin, and formed pupae.

It's such a large Nightshade plant, that it's all-you-can-eat for these big guys! Their Mom sure knew the best plant for these hungry siblings!

A common Tobacco Hornworm caterpillar (Manduca sexta), chomping on a pepper in my garden. Normally these garden destroyers are green and well-camouflaged, but it turns out they glow blue under UV light. 30-second exposure.

I HAS NEW PETZ!!! (Tobacco hornworm, Manduca sexta)

Image taken in Roseville, Placer County, California

Annual Jalapeno Plant Eating Contest.

So far, two peppers, six leaves

It's Wednesday; auction day at the Nashville Stockyard. Do you suppose I can sell him?

 

† Sad news: We found him in the corner of the patio... Dead. †

 

(Good Jalapenos!)

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