Prepupa Spicebush (complimentary pattern alterations!)
If you didn't know, some caterpillars change looks drastically from one instar to the next (when they molt) and then sometimes, if all factors are just right (temperature, weather, diet, etc.) they can take on a bright color for just a few hours before they molt* into their pupa state to become a chrysalis to develop into a butterfly. If you see a caterpillar in the wild in these special last-hurrah colors, you are very lucky!
*Just a quick note here to mention that not all caterpillars (moth or butterfly) molt into a pupa state. Some spin their enclosures (butterfly: chrysalis; moth: cocoon) out of a silk thread they produce themselves and others build their enclosure by gluing tiny bits of dead leaves, etc. together with a similar substance (or they steal bits of spider web! to tape it all up!). Some pupate in a week or so above ground attached to plants or even your deck rail and some bury themselves underground and take all winter. It's all very complicated with endless variables and I enjoy discovering these little details whenever I work on a new species.
So, just over 2 years ago, I released the pattern for the Spicebush Caterpillar. It's a very striking caterpillar with its false eyes and the black outlines to the color spots gives it a very cartoonish look. Another feature of this caterpillar is the osmeterium- a little sense organ that he can push out (and also sprays a stinky substance) if he is ever threatened. You can see a lot of videos on YouTube of assholes intentionally frightening them to make them display this organ, but I'm not going to link to them. My design for this caterpillar features a pocket that you can hide the osmeterium in when not in use.
|The Original Spicebush Caterpillar Pattern is available on Ravelry and Etsy|
The Prepupa-colored Spicebush is based on this pattern with mostly just color changes, though I have added one detail that you may like or not like. At any rate, it is my pleasure to explain the changes I made here in this blog post in case you ever want to make one yourself! (Or one of each!)
|The Prepupa Spicebush Caterpillar|
So here are the changes I made to the pattern to achieve this second look:
|Shows the scallop transition|
|Prepupa Caterpillar Undercarriage|