How do Caterpillars breathe?
Don Herbison-Evans (
Cephonodes kingii, SPHINGIDAE
On each side of each segment
there is an oval opening called the spiracle.
This leads in to a branching tube, the trachea,
that delivers air to all of the segments.
The Caterpillar does not actually breath, but the
compression and extension of each segemnt as the Caterpillar moves
causes the air to go in and out of the spiracles,
so that oxygen can be taken in, and carbon dioxide
Frequently Asked Questions about Caterpillars
(updated 5 March 2007)