) may be the only insects recognized by their homes rather than their appearance.These sociable caterpillars live together in silk nests, which they build in the crotches of cherry and apple trees.
In truth, they rarely do enough damage to kill a healthy plant, and if you want an interesting insect to observe, this is one to watch.
Several hundred caterpillars reside communally in their silken tent, built in the crotch of tree branches.
Models of cooperation, the eastern tent caterpillars live and work in harmony until they are ready to pupate. In their final instar, eastern tent caterpillars reach over 2 inches long and sport visible hairs down the sides of their bodies.
moths break free of their cocoons after three weeks.
Like many moths, they lack bright colors and appear almost drab.
A close look reveals two parallel lines of cream across wings of tan or reddish brown.
Classification: Kingdom - Animalia Phylum - Arthropoda Class - Insecta Order - Lepidoptera Family - Lasiocampidae Genus - is abundant, the large number of caterpillars may defoliate their host trees entirely, and then wander to less preferable plants to feed.
The adult moths live just a few days, and do not feed.
Life Cycle: Like all butterflies and moths, eastern tent caterpillars undergo complete metamorphosis with four stages: Egg - The female oviposits 200-300 eggs in late spring.
Larva - Caterpillars develop in just a few weeks, but remain quiescent in the egg mass until the following spring, when new leaves appear.
Pupa - The sixth instar larva spins a silken cocoon in a sheltered location, and pupates within. Adult - Moths fly in search of mates in May and June, and live just long enough to reproduce.