Return to the Butterfly Garden Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Skin eating question

Posted by alex928 8 (My Page) on
Sat, Jul 5, 14 at 20:56

This is probably a silly question, but...

I have a BST caterpillar who just molted earlier today. The molting went fine, but I notice she didn't eat all of her skin (I don't actually know if it's female, but I've been thinking of it as a she). I read recently that if a caterpillar doesn't eats its skin, it could be deformed as a butterfly. I know she ate some of it, because I saw her doing it, but I'm still a little concerned.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Skin eating question

I've never heard that not eating their skin could cause them to become a deformed butterfly, and I SERIOUSLY doubt there's any truth to it. I've never done a study, but it doesn't seem logical that it would have any negative consequences It's probably one of those things people concoct like, if you touch a baby bird, their parents will reject it. Equally untrue.


RE: Skin eating question

Thanks...I guess maybe I worry too much. She did eat all the skin previously, so it's probably OK. Maybe she just thought she was done, or got bored with it or something. :)

RE: Skin eating question

Whenever I have had BST cats in containers outdoors on my potting
Shed I have observed the small to med stages eating their sheds.
(Note: I have also noticed Anole lizards in the wild pulling off pieces
Of shed skin from their bodies ;they ate it.)
Maybe this is just the Norm.


RE: Skin eating question

Wow, didn't know that about birds. Cool to know. Alright.

RE: Skin eating question

Apparently this was only the beginning of somewhat head-scratching behavior from this particular cat. I'm thinking she's either eccentric or doesn't quite have this whole "caterpillar thing" figured out. She's currently settling down to pupate on the stick I gave her (I half expected her to reject it in favor of some odd location, but after exploring it for seemingly forever, she finally took to it), and I don't know how pupation is going to turn out.

I think she's giving me some gray hairs, this one. . ;)

RE: Skin eating question

Sorry for the double post, but it looks like you were right! She just flew off a little while ago, a beautiful, perfect female. Her name was Françoise. (No pictures though, sorry!)

Now I just need the other one to eclose too. :)

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Butterfly Garden Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here