Acronicta americana – pupation
A couple of weeks ago my Acronicta americana caterpillars decided it was time to pupate. I provided them with some soft wood, and they dug right in!
They were mostly white or only lightly yellow-tinged before they started, but once they began digging they darkened up. Their hairs and underlying body color all turned a brownish yellow in order to blend in with the wood a little better.
Most Acronicta caterpillars burrow into wood in some fashion in order to pupate. Some of these Acronicta americana made tunnels all the way in, some made troughs that they covered with bits of wood, and some were lazy and made their cocoon on top of the bark.
Here you can see some of the silk and bits of wood one caterpillar used to protect itself.
Every day I check the container excitedly, I cannot wait to get some adults! I had 10 A. americana caterpillars pupate, so I should have a pretty good series once they all emerge.