MOTHER GOOSE CABOOSE - Poetry Pals Caterpillar Facts Continue Back Home

Brown And Furry

Brown and furry
Caterpillar in a hurry,
Take your walk
To the shady leaf, or stalk,
Or what not,
Which may be the chosen spot.
No toad spy you,
Hovering bird of prey pass by you;
Spin and die,
To live again a butterfly.

- Christina G. Rossetti

Directions: Print out the animal picture and color. Cut out the pictures by cutting on the solid lines and dotted lines. Assemble the picture by connecting each end of the base piece with double-sided or scotch tape so the picture stands up. Print out the page with the poem and the facts and place it in your own poem book. Illustrate the poem. Write your own story or poem and add it to your poem book.


Caterpillar Facts.

Caterpillars are the larvae (the young) of butterflies and moths. They crawl and look like worms but they are not. They have six legs, chewing mouthparts, and no wings.They may be brown, yellow, white or green with black rings. They have a distinct head, a thorax of three segments, and an abdomen of ten segments. Legs are on the thorax. Some caterpillars have fleshy abdominal prolegs, but these are not true legs. The “skin” may be fuzzy, smooth, or bristly. The head bears a pair of antennae (feelers) and a few simple eyes.

During the larval stage, for about two months, the caterpillar eats and eats and eats, and grows and grows and grows. It does not eat just anything. The parent (butterfly) has laid its eggs on the very plants that will feed its larvae. When the eggs hatch, the young caterpillar has the food that it needs to grow. As it grows, it sheds its skin (molts) many times as its body increases in size. In the fall, when it is fully grown, the butterfly caterpillar stops eating and forms a smooth hard case (chrysalis) around itself and hangs from a twig or leaf. Moth caterpillars spin a thick silk web called a cocoon around their bodies and fasten themselves to a twig or rough spot. This is the pupa stage. The pupa grows in the chrysalis or cocoon to an adult. In the spring, the adult butterfly or moth break out of their encasements with wings and six legs.