Florida Nature Pictures

Diaphania indica
The Cucumber Moth

Cucumber Moth Caterpillar
Cucumber Moth Caterpillar

I found these little guys munching away at my Zucchini leaves.
I learned they they are common pests of the plant family Cucurbitaceae
which includes Cucumbers, Squash, and Melons.
They were less than an inch long.


Cucumber Moth Caterpillar

The caterpillars of the Cucumber moth feed at night and during the day, they roll over a piece of leaf and make a little hiding place.


You can tell when the caterpillar is about ready to pupate or start making its cocoon when the two white lines on the back are barely visable.
This one to the right is nice and big and getting ready to shed its skin and become a pupa.


Cucumber Moth Caterpillar


Cucumber Moth Caterpillar

Here is another picture where the caterpillar is even closer to shedding its skin. The body starts to bloat up.




Cucumber Moth Cocoon



Cucumber Moth Pupa

Here is the cocoon or pupa of the Cucumber Moth. I took it out of its silky leaf hiding spot so I could get a good picture.
I will be putting it in a container until it emerges to keep it safe.



Cucumber Moth
Cucumber Moth

After 8 days, the moth emerged. Here it is still drying its wings.



Cucumber Moth
This picture came out REALLY bad.
Until I can take more, this is the only shot I have of the moth with its wings nicely spread open.
The tufts of hair toward the end are bushier on the females than the males of this species.
So, this looks like a female to me.


Diaphania indica
The Cucumber Moth, Pumpkin Caterpillar

Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Crambidae

South Florida





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