“On Saturday the ate through one piece of chocolate cake, one ice-cream cone, one pickle, one slice of Swiss cheese, one slice of salami, one lollipop, one item of cherry pie, one sausage, one cupcake and one part of watermelon.” The really Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle.

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The diet that the really Hungry Caterpillar is an amazing one. Exterior the kingdom of children fiction caterpillars are not recognized for snacking on processed food. Most species are vegan, sticking to plant-based food sources.

Butterflies and also moths lay their eggs where their offspring will have actually the best chance that survival. This usually way on the leaf of their foodplant, providing a ‘ready meal’ once they hatch. But there are constantly exceptions come the rule.

The peculiar eating behavior of part caterpillars execute sound favor made-up stories. Here are ten things hungry caterpillars eat that can surprise you:


1) Flowers

For part species, the pipeline of a plant simply aren’t enough and they will certainly devour the buds, seeds and also blooms too. The Star-wort caterpillar an especially enjoys munching top top the flowers and also developing seeds of the Sea Aster plant on saltmarshes. 


2) Honeycomb

Although lollipops room off the menu, some caterpillars do have a sweet tooth. The Wax Moth adult makes an enemy of beekeepers by invading hives to lay its eggs. When the caterpillars flower they feeding on the honeycomb, sometimes destroying the hive. 

3) Grass

Our many common and widespread types of butterfly choose easy-to-find foods. Wild grasses carry out nourishment because that Gatekeeper, grassland Brown and Skipper household caterpillars – a great excuse come let an area of her garden thrive wild. 

4) Bark and Twigs

The caterpillars of the Lunar Hornet Moth bore right into Sallow trees whereby they feeding on the living hardwood inside for around two years. The caterpillars rarely cause much damages to the trees however when they are cut down friend can conveniently see the old burrows in the wood, the broad of your little finger. The adult moth mimics a Hornet, but it is friendly and also doesn’t sting.


5) pet Waste

Skin Moth caterpillars space happy to chew v the skins of dead birds and mice, owl pellets and guano in birds’ nests. Castle are among nature’s cleaners, along with other tiny moths, flies and also beetles. You may think the this together disgusting but they all perform important roles together scavengers; there is no them, we would certainly be knee-deep in rotting carcasses. 

6) Ants

Large Blue butterflies have an unexplained lifecycle that relies on a particular varieties of red ant. The young caterpillars begin their stays feeding top top the flower of Wild Thyme or Marjoram. As soon as they’ve had their to fill of the flower they drop come the ground, releasing a scent which encourages unwitting ants to lug the caterpillars ago to their nest. Over there the caterpillars feeding on ant grubs before pupating underground. As soon as the butterfly increase it crawls up out of the ant nest prior to expanding its wings.

7) Moss and lichen

Dingy, Buff, Common, Muslin, Rosy and Scarce Footman moths all feed ~ above lichens growing on tree trunks, fence posts, old walls, miscellaneous mosses and also decaying vegetables matter. The Brussels Lace caterpillar mimics a lichen-covered twig –matching its shade of eco-friendly to the particular kind of lichen that is eating. Perfect camouflage to enable it come eat that is fill safe from predators.

8) Hair

It’s a usual misconception that all moths eat clothes. Over there are just two varieties of moth regularly discovered in dwellings – that’s less than 1% of every moth varieties in the UK – whose caterpillars eat natural pet fibres. Common apparel Moth caterpillars like dirty wool to clean well-stored clothes and also will likewise feed top top fur, hair and also feathers.

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9) every other

Carnivorous caterpillars are fairly unusual however those that the Dun-bar will certainly feast on various other moth caterpillars if the possibility arises. They eat leaves lot of the time but will happily swap your salad for caterpillars, even of their own kind, if lock bump right into them. 

10) Anything

The rose Marbled moth caterpillar is important omnivorous. The small caterpillar start on fresh flower petals however as it grow it becomes less choosy and seems happy to feeding on wilted or mouldy flowers. It’s additionally partial come dead and also live insects! every the species detailed above can be uncovered in the UK.

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