Calamondin Fruit Tree Pest

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    lilac41059lilac41059
    Greenhorn
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    Hi.  I just joined this group in hopes of finding out what a particular pest is that I found on our calamondin fruit tree and how to get rid of it (them).  It is eating the upper leaves on the tree.  It is, at least to me, a freaky creature.  Pictures are attached.  Any ideas?

    Calamondin Fruit Tree Pest, 1 of 3

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    Nate from N&GNate from N&G
    Expert gardener (moderator)
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    Hi, it sure looks like the caterpillar of the Giant Swallowtail!

    http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/citrus/giantswallowtail.htm

    It loves eating citrus, but it also looks nice and it’s a butterfly that’s often seen in the lower 48. It’s not an endangered species so if it’s really devastating your calamondin, you can pick it off. Use gloves since it defends itself with a stinky smell.

    giant-swallowtail

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    betsylilybetsylily
    Greenhorn
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    Goodness me the caterpillar is so ugly but the butterfly so beautiful!

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    CarolCarol
    Green Thumb (moderator)
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    I couldn’t agree more with @Nate. And also @betsylily. 😀

    On another topic, despite being a food source of this larvae, your calamondin fruits look so healthy!

     


    “You got to be a gardener to appreciate dirty and muddy hands.”

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    joujoujoujou
    Greenhorn
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    Hi Nate,

    I saw this on my lemon tree. Do you think it’s the same caterpillar?

     

    Thanks,

    Joujou

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    joujoujoujou
    Greenhorn
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    Hi Nate,

    I revisited my young lemon tree and this was what I found out.

    I had removed the caterpillar and had transferred it on a mature tree nearby. I guess it came back! Anything else I could do to protect this citrus plant considering I don’t want to kill this poor insect?

     

    Thanks again,

    Joujou

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    Nate from N&GNate from N&G
    Expert gardener (moderator)
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    That is one HUNGRY critter! There are a few things you can try out here on our page on controlling caterpillars. Given the size, and that there’s only one tree to care for, I’d go for a protective net. Form a cylinder around the lemon tree and tie both ends like a candy wrapper, the trunk sticking out from below on one side. Not too tight on the trunk, so as not to strangle it, but not too loose or the caterpillar might sneak through. Very fine mesh, like mosquito nets. When the tree gets bigger, a couple caterpillars won’t hurt it, but at this stage it’s worth protecting! As for the caterpillar, I think its the “lime swallowtail”, which definitely makes sense on your citrus sapling… http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/bfly/lime_swallowtail.htm

Viewing 7 posts - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)