What type of caterpillar is this? It's huge!

snozzleberry

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I found this large fella feasting on a green tomato. Can anyone tell me what this is?
 

digitS'

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Well, I believe that it surely either Manduca quinquemaculata or Manduca sexta.

The former is the tomato hornworm.

Manduca sexta is the tobacco hornworm but often shows up on tomatoes.

You can do a google image search and try to determine which it is.

Steve
 

snozzleberry

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digitS' said:
Well, I believe that it surely either Manduca quinquemaculata or Manduca sexta.

The former is the tomato hornworm.

Manduca sexta is the tobacco hornworm but often shows up on tomatoes.

You can do a google image search and try to determine which it is.

Steve
I think you nailed it. Manduca quinquemaculata. A neat bug. I've decided to keep him as a pet, or rather, a science experiment.
Thanks!
 

stepstephens2

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I have a story about these! My mom would find these on tomato plants all the time when I was little. My brother loved to collect off the wall pets so she let him keep one of them. He thought it was a good idea to put it in with one of his tarantulas. Apparently, the spider and the caterpillar didn't like each other and thought it was a death match. You're already guessing what happened, aren't you? All I remember was how upset my brother was when the next morning to discover a dead tarantula and a beat up but living tomato worm... when he picked it up, he must have been a little rough because it squirted something onto his wooden desk. When he tried to wipe the worm goo away it took the varnish off the desk! So, be careful with your new worm and don't let it kill your pets or ruin your furniture. :p
 
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