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Unidentified Caterpillar - Polygonia comma

Unidentified Caterpillar - Polygonia comma
Bellevue, Sarpy County, Nebraska, USA
August 16, 2008

I've finally sat down are really examined this one.
What can be seen of the color patter, and the structure, match up with P. comma, not with any of the others.

Moved from Commas, Question Mark.

David - I have to admit it is fun to receive an ID related email 9 years after submission of an image. I have always appreciated how useful this site is and the seriousness in getting ID's correct. Thanks.

I believe this is
Polygonia interrogationis. The pattern has pretty much faded out this closes to shedding it's skin, but the spine arrangement, with the ones on the head dark, matches this species fairly well.

Thanks a lot.
I appreciate the really quick feedback, David.

Not sure why I never got back to this one sooner.
Glad you're still tuned in to BugGuide.

Too bad I can't go back and fix my silly typos now ("are" instead of "and"; "patter" instead of "pattern" - I'm going to blame my computer for those - even if I really did it). :0)

you're welcome - it's still bothering me a bit though
I thought P. interrogationis most likely for your area, because it is probably most common, and because of the dark head horns. I've tried, but can't definitely rule out another species of Polygonia though; either P. progne, or P. comma would be possible. Knowing the food plant would help nail it down. In Nebraska, I would expect P. progne to be on Ribes, P. comma most likely on Hops, and P. interrogationis on Elm (they can all use other things though). Problem is, when they are about to pupate, they wander away (usually) from their host plant. The only other species that I can think of in your area that would have branched head horns would be the Buckeye, but it doesn't look like that. If you saw what came from the pupa, of course that would make it more definite.

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