Yellow caterpillars are larvae that turn to stunning moths or butterflies. Some types of yellow caterpillars are fuzzy-looking and others have smooth segmented bodies typical of many species of caterpillars. Sometimes, yellow fuzzy caterpillars can be poisonous. Although they are not toxic enough to kill you, touching them can cause skin irritation.
All types of yellow caterpillars, as with all caterpillar species, belong to the order of insects called Lepidoptera. They generally look like fat slugs or worms, although some caterpillars have exotic spiky bodies. Caterpillars have a huge appetite and they eat through a lot of vegetation before they enter the pupal stage. After that, the insects reach their final stage and emerge as moths or butterflies.
When looking at pictures to identify caterpillars, it is good to remember that caterpillars go through 4 or 5 growth stages. So, an immature caterpillar may look completely different from one before it becomes a pupa.
Because caterpillars can’t defend themselves, they have various defense mechanisms to protect themselves from predators. Bright yellow and black caterpillars can appear unappetizing to other animals. Spiny bristles on some yellow caterpillars have venom that can cause irritation. Green caterpillars use camouflage to hide from birds and other animals.
In this article, you will learn about the most common types of yellow caterpillars. Along with pictures of caterpillars, descriptions and their scientific name will help identify species of yellow caterpillars.
Yellow Caterpillar Identification
It is easy to identify species of yellow caterpillars due to their yellowish coloring. Some fuzzy caterpillars are yellow due to the color of their spiny hairs (called setae). Other yellow caterpillars have yellow and black markings making them look like types of striped caterpillars.
Interestingly, from all the different species of caterpillars, most yellow caterpillars have spikes or hairs making them look furry. You may also notice that some fuzzy yellow caterpillars have large horns at either end of their bodies. It’s good to remember, that most hairy yellow caterpillars can sting because of their urticating hairs.