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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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Caterpillars of Eastern Forests

Hickory Horned Devil (Citheronia regalis) [Regal or Royal Walnut Moth]

JPG-Photo of Hickory Horned Devil

Largest and most formidable appearing eastern forest insect. Heavily armored with long stout orange and black dorsal horns on thoracic segments. Abdomen with shorter black spines. Despite appearance, harmless to touch (presumably stout spines make it difficult, perhaps even dangerous for birds to swallow). Food: often hickories, walnuts, persimmons, sumacs, sweet gum, and other forest trees. Caterpillar: July to October; 1 generation.

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