Driftless Prairies: Native Habitat Restoration

Nature inspires awe!

Lasiocampidae (Tent Caterpillar and Lappet Moths)

These moths do not have working mouth parts, therefore do not feed. The hairs of these caterpillars irritate the lining of birds’ stomachs so these guys are relatively safe from bird predation, except for the cuckoo, but we don’t have those in this area.

Larvae of this family tend to live in colonies, making their nests from webs by using sheets of webbing continuously wrapped around and around. Each sheet has a space between the next, allowing the caterpillars to move around. Not only do they make web colonies, they also create silk trails as they travel from nest to eating sites. Tent caterpillars overwinter as eggs, then begin their larval phase in the spring.