There are so many these hairy, striped orange-black caterpillars in my backyard.

the photo

What are these caterpillars? Are these dangerous?

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    $\begingroup$ Welcome to Biology.SE! For identification questions please: 1) upload an appropriately sized image (free tools for image resizing exist — e.g. picresize.com), 2) include the location (e.g. country and region — the more specific the better), and 3) include habitat information (e.g. type of plant community and species the caterpillar was found on). ——— The location and habitat can be essential clues for identification and links are discouraged since 1) if they can break they render this post and any answers worthless, and 2) they can be used to link to malicious websites. Thanks! 😊 $\endgroup$
    – tyersome
    Jul 28, 2019 at 19:34
  • $\begingroup$ Resembles Lophocampa maculata but with orange and black striping reversed (and similar in pattern to Platyprepia virginalis but without the abundant white setae). Also, L. maculata appears to be confined to more northern regions of North America* based on the range information I've seen. I've seen images of your exact specimen from Costa Rica here. $\endgroup$ Sep 8, 2019 at 4:21

1 Answer 1


enter image description here

It's a woolly bear caterpillar which will later grow to become Isabella tiger moth.

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    $\begingroup$ Are you sure, it's the same? The color scheme is reversed in the picture.. $\endgroup$
    – Frieke
    Aug 7, 2019 at 13:33
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    $\begingroup$ OP's specimen is possibly Erebidae like the woolly bear, but the woolly bear (Pyrrharctia isabella) doesn't live as far south as I assume the OP's image was taken. Also, as the previous comment pointed out, just look at the color difference between your guess and the OP's picture to realize it is likely incorrect. Please be more careful when answering species-identification questions on this site. Also, your answers should provide greater detail and reputable sources to support your claim. See our help center for advice for writing good answers. Thanks! $\endgroup$ Sep 7, 2019 at 16:27

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