1. Grayish Black in color
2. What appears to be suction cups with hair like protrusions coming out in a fan like pattern from each suction cup.
3. Approximately 2-3 inches long.
4. Found in the woods on July 9, 2011 at 12:30 p.m. in Linden, VA 22642. Caterpillar was on the leaf debris on the ground in the woods.
5. Area is quite rocky, located in the Shenandoah Mountains, Elevation 1400 feet.
6. Weather was sunny, it had recently rained and it was approximately 78 degrees.
7. I picked up the caterpillar and moved it to a large boulder to photograph it.
8. Trees common to the area are maples, oaks, locust, dogwood.
9. The “suction cups” and the hair like protrusions coming out from them resemble Sea Anemones.
Thank you so much!!!
(Linden, VA, USA)
Your caterpillar is a Buck moth.
Glad you handled it carefully, because they are known for the spines to deliver a painful sting. But that is if mishandled or squeezed.
These are found in eastern North America in wooded areas. The caterpillars feed on oak especially Scrub oak. The later stages or instars are known to wander.