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Alder Moth caterpillar

Alder Moth caterpillar
Photo Information
Copyright: Valerie FOSSE (valy67) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1727 W: 59 N: 3060] (9219)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-07-01
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon 350D, Canon EF 18mm-55mm f/3.5 - f/5.6
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): European caterpilars [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2007-07-23 0:15
Viewed: 5090
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 67
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Just sme days before I went to hospital, I visited the Botanical Garden in Saverne. I saw a lot of flowers, of course, but what interested me the most were the insects. There were dozens of bees, some huge hoverflies, some butterflies and blue damselflies, and also a species of fire red bugs. But the strangest thing I saw this day was this beautiful caterpillar. I love his shape and his beautiful colors.

It was sitting on a plant whose name I forgot, not moving. He was not well-camouflaged, as his colors immediatly caught my attention, and he didn't move when I picked him up with a weed. I took some pictures (not many, because it was starting to rain) and then I put him back on his own plant.

I would like to thank Ivan (Argus) for givingme the name of this beautiful caterpillar.

ALDER MOTH - Acronicta alni

Class : Insecta
Order : Lepidoptera
Family : Noctuidae

The Aler Moth is a small European moth, with greyish wings like many other species. Th wingspan is 33-38 mm.

The adult lives in wet forests, often close to the rivers or close to the water, where the Alder, his main feeding plant, grows in abundance. It can also be found on oaks, willows or birches.

This insect is living in all the temperates regions of Europe, even in the Caucasus and in Siberia. He is not very common, even if he cannot be considered as really rare.

The caterpillar has a rather slow growth.It develops from june to september, and then he transforms into a chrysalis. It will pass the winter in this form. When it is very young, the larva looks like a bird dropping, but when it grows it becomes highly distinctive, black and yellow with a number of club-like hairs.

pablominto, elefantino, JORAPAVI, ridvan, haraprasan, jcoowanitwong, jmp, dew77, lovenature, Alex99, oscarromulus, Christopher_PL, cicindela, boreocypriensis, maurydv has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Juyona Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor [C: 2232 W: 10 N: 2971] (16891)
  • [2007-07-23 0:23]

Hola Valerie,
excelente macro y original...
bella composición y excelentes detalles y pov,
agradable bg,

Helo Valerie,
They come in many different shapes and colours, don't they..!
This one is very well depicted, with all those strange "antennas" well visible...
Macro work is well done, with sharp fine details!
Pablo -

Nice close up of this colorfull caterpillar.


good details
good focus
you were so close
good job

aleks ;)
best regards

Esta fotografía la calificaría como mínimo de espectacular. La composición es perfecta y el fondo excelente. Veo que falta algo de definición en el color negro... a mi también me pasa con ese color ya que me falta experiencia jejeje Un abrazo Valerie y muchas gracias por tus amables comentarios a mi mariposa, que por cierto es mi récord de votos con una foto en TK y eso quier decir lo malo que aún soy jajajaja

Hola Valerie,
Excelente toma de esta curiosa oruga, bonita composición con mucho detalle, gran nitidez con luz y fondo agradables, Saludos
José Ramón

Hello Valeir,
Interesting content, well composed, good light.

  • Great 
  • GLEM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 540 W: 87 N: 750] (10)
  • [2007-07-23 3:17]

salut Valérie
effectivement une étrange chanille avec de longs poils et des couleurs vives pour effrayer les prédateurs. Bonne composition globale avec un BG flou et doux. Dommage que sa position soit fermée, on y perd en lisibilité et en netteté.


selam valerie, wow excellent shot and very good composition of this colorful caterpiller nice pov and bg with splendid colours. Well done ! Regards ridvan

Hi Valerie,
Yes a strange looking but beautiful caterpillar. Very nice details, colors and composition. Thanks a lot for sharing.

C'est une chenille très élégante que tu as capturé avec grand art Valérie. J'aime bien sa forme, les couleurs et ces beaux détails. Bravo!

Hello Valerie,
Beautiful caterpillar. Eye catching yellow stripe on black body. Nice showing against blurred background. Lovely pov. Very well done and tfs.

Hi Valerie,
You have made an excellent macro photograph of this caterpillar.
I have not a clue of the specie but it is the photo quality that I admire.
Very well done,

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2007-07-23 12:35]

Hello valerie,
This is a fine capture of the caterpillar of the Alder Moth, Acronicta alni. This moth is coloured grey and black.
Nice sharp and well presented shot and thank you for sharing it.
Best wishes, Ivan

  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2007-07-23 19:09]

Hello Valerie

A very well focused and composed shot of this caterpillar.The colours are rich and well saturated.The DOF is very good with excellent sharpness in the details.I like the tightrope it is walking on.TFS


  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2007-07-24 0:35]

Hi Valerie,
Very colourful caterpillar and quite interesting spikes those. Very sharp image and neat focus. I like the colour contrasts here. The smooth BG highlights it perfectly and makes it look majestic. Excellent POV and very nicely composed. Kudos.

What a lovely creature! Lovely colours, perfect Dof and funny pose!
Best wishes,

  • Great 
  • jmp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1659 W: 95 N: 2273] (8415)
  • [2007-07-24 11:44]

Hola Valerie,
Un gusano realmente original y bonito. Buen punto de vista y profundidad de campo y una composición muy acertada.
Gracias por compartir esta foto.
José M.

bonjour valerie
une belle espece de chenille,techniquement la photo est tres bonne,DOMMAGE que je ne lise pas l'anglais(hi hi hi).

Belle photo de ce caterpillar, insecte très joli, bien coloré,superbes couleurs, grande netteté.Amitier Thomas
je reviens

  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2007-07-25 2:09]

Hello Valerie,
Beautiful close up.Well caught,framed and composed.DOF,BG and exposure are also excellent.

Hi Valarie,
This is surely a wonderful caterpillar. The contrast of the colors are wonderful. I really like the empty composition and the central position of the caterpillar. The nice curve of the body does make the photo more interesting. A slightly smaller aperture might would have placed the entire caterpillar in focus.

Hi Valerie
Wonderful detail here on your caterpillar. I love the colour and his markings. I'm curious to know what he looks like when he turns into a butterfly. Excellent DOF, lighting and composition. The caterpillar looks like he's having a good meal. Good notes!
TFS Janice

Hello Valerie.

Excellent macro, very good details and colors.

Jose Luis.

Hello Valerie,
Great shot of this big catapillar. Great DOF and beautiful color. TFS

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2007-08-02 4:42]

Hi Valerie, again.
What a nice combination of smooth light BG and dark sharp and perfectly details little monster. I also like exposure of the shot (it is so difficult task) and very interesting subject and composition. Bravo and TFS.

GREAT note.
Excellent composition.
Very well presented.
Excellent clarity.
GREAT PIECE OF WORK. Done with taste.
Thank you for being soooooo gentle with the 'future' butterfly.
Mario with friendly greetings from Canada.

  • Great 
  • puciu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 469 W: 0 N: 16] (2631)
  • [2007-08-21 12:39]

cześć Valerie. Fantastyczna gońsienica. Dobra fotka. Ostrość i kolorki super.
Pozdrawiam Robert.

Very nice capture of this Noctuidae. Great composed, with natural colours, thanks


Hello Valerie!
This is really splendid macro of caterpillar!Shape of this insect is amazing, and colouration very suggestive (protection against predators). You kept all details of its body with very good DOF and sharpness, I like also colouration :)
Best greetings and have a happy Easter Holidays!

  • Great 
  • izler Gold Star Critiquer [C: 1387 W: 3 N: 9] (44)
  • [2008-05-07 14:08]

hello Valerie
wonderful close-up of this beautiful caterpillar
ccomposition, POV, BG, colours and details are great

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2009-01-13 2:42]

Hi Valerie,
super sharp and great sharpness. Well composed against the greenish blurry and natural background.
Excellent time shot and you give a expressive and well calculated shot.
Beautiful composition with splendid colours.


What a strange shaped caterpillar Valerie. Perfectly focussed and composed macro shot in a fine composition with great clarity MF!
TFS and cheers,

Ciao Valerie,
une étrange et très jolie chenille avec des couleurs fantastiques, bon cadrage avec un beau et flou BG, bonne netteté, j'aime sa pose suspendue dans le vide.
Merci et fèlicitations.

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