Rainbow Battleship Caterpillar
(Photo: courtesy of photographer Darren Jew)
These Caterpillars sting. The Caterpillars of this species look as though they carry their own TV antennas. They have four large branched spikes protruding from the front and two from the rear, and a series of smaller ones along each side. These all sting. The sting has been described as "worse than 3 wasp stings". The caterpillars are brightly coloured greenish-yellow, and have a red dorsal stripe with a broad blue edging, and a blue band with red patches along each side.
They have been found feeding on :
The caterpillars have reduced legs, and locomote using a slug-like movement of the underside of the body.
The cocoon is formed on a leaf. It is spun out of silk in a small sphere, then covered in a liquid that sets like a tiny cricket ball.
The species has been found in :
It has been suggested that it is the larva of Comana albibasis. It has also been suggested that it is the larva of Calcarifera ordinata. But until someone rears the caterpillar to get the adult moth, and publishes the result, or maybe rears eggs from females of C. albibasis and C. ordinata, and publishes pictures of their larvae, the Rainbow Battleship larva remains a mystery.
(updated 28 May 2013, 9 May 2023)