Yellow caterpillar with black dots

Asked September 21, 2018, 12:36 PM EDT

Hello, it is September and I am finding yellow caterpillars with black dots crawling up the screens on my gazebo. Can someone identify this caterpillar? Is it poisonous? Will it bite/sting? Can you touch it without a problem? Do I need to call an expert in to spray to get rid of them? Thank you!!

Lackawanna County Pennsylvania butterflies

1 Response

This is a sawfly larva. They are relatively harmless, and are generally leaf-eaters. Check to see if you have them on trees or shrubs nearby. Do you have birch trees?

They are not a concern unless you have toddlers who might pick them up and play with them and put them in their mouths, etc. I wouldn't spray them; the ones on the gazebo might be easy to brush off with a small broom into a trash can if you'd like to get rid of them fairly quickly. Birds and other animals eat these, too.