One Mother of a Grub

Can anyone tell me what kind of caterpillar or grub this is?


Click the image to enlarge. My pinky finger is in the photo for scale. Unfortunately it’s closer to the lens than the caterpillar, so really the scale is kinda off. But trust me, this thing was big.

The photo was taken in eastern Canada (the real eastern part of Canada, not Toronto) in Prince Edward Island.

I’ve never seen anything like this before. (And which would you rather find in your salad, this thing or a live frog?)

About Phillip

Phillip Cairns is a beekeeper in St. John's, Newfoundland, who writes about beekeeping at

9 Replies to “One Mother of a Grub”

  1. I was going to guess that it was a type of Hawk Moth because it looks very much like the giant Horned Tomato Worms we down here in the Lower portions of North America must contend with each growing season.

    I’ve seen a few Hummingbird type Hawk Moths around my flowerbeds too.

    Then I noticed that Ashley had to bring those 75 cent words into the comments section, words like “lepidoptera” and “Sphingidae.” I’d pay to have someone pronounce the word “Sphingidae” for me.

    Then I followed the link Ashley provided and saw a reference to the “Death-head Moth” and that reminded me of The Silence of the Lambs movie and I got so spooked, I couldn’t think about moths any longer, so I shut down and just shuddered and chilled out.

  2. OH! By the way…Jody is correct. That does look like an Alien finger.
    The up-side-down fingernail was a dead give away. Way to go Jody.
    You guys crack me up.

  3. The mystery grub. If you look closely at the enlarged photo, at the far end of the grub, you’ll notice what looks like a thick black torn sticking out the end of it. What the hell is that? A distinguishing feature to say the least. Maybe some kind of stinger. Any ideas?

  4. “Usually their bodies lack and hairs or tubercules, but most species have a “horn” at the posterior end… (from the Wiki link Ashley provided)

    I’d say that’s it.

  5. yeah, those h. tomato worms are difficult to get used to down here. I still remember my first o. garden and how the plants were just being devoured and when I looked real closely… YIKES, no wonder- HUGE chomping worms!!GROSS
    funny – I’m only here because I found your video (toutons) -herbally enhanced? after viewing Whole Wheat Bread’s music video

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