I have one friend who’s really caterpillar squeamish. But, I think this shot should be safe:
Those are Bombyx mori eggs, on my fingertip. I love the sense of massive/tiny.
A Bombyx hatchling on the chopped leaves.
A Bombyx hatchling surrounded by eggs. The white ones are already hatched; the yellow ones were infertile. Some of these, you can see through to the caterpillars.
This is a hatchling Polyphemus caterpillar. These are America’s best silk moth, as far as silk goes, in my opinion.
Again with the fingertip scale.
The caterpillar on the right, is about four days old. You can see that they grow very quickly.
The clusters of scoli (little hairs) remind me of the spines of cactuses. They grow in the same little clumpy ridges. On some caterpillars, the spines are sharp, or even stinging – but these are soft.
Notably, the faces of these two first-instar caterpillars are the same size. The hatchlings start out looking bizarrely top-heavy, and by the time they grow into their skins, their heads look comically small. Then, they change heads and skins, and start growing again.