People have been finding tiger swallowtail caterpillars in the landscape recently. They have been on the move as they look for places to pupate. Upon first sight, this insect is quite mysterious looking. It is up to a little over two inches in length. The body is either brownish or greenish with a yellow stripe circling the body somewhat near the head.
What stands out, however, are two large yellow and blue eyespots in front of the yellow stripe. This gives the
|Tiger swallowtail caterpillar. Note
orange osmeterium near the head and
the yellow and blue eyespots. Photo:
Howard Ensign Evans, CSU State Univ.
Despite all of its bluster, a tiger swallowtail caterpillar is perfectly harmless to people. Don’t be alarmed if you see one, just let it go on its way and know it will grow to be a beautiful tiger swallowtail butterfly.
To see more pictures, see the eastern tiger swallowtail entry in BugGuide