Superfamily: Bombycoidea, Latreille, 1802
Perisomena caecigena is celebrated on, what I believe is, a postage stamp from Bulgaria.
In late fall, females lay up to 100
rectangular, 2.5 x 2mm, glossy cream coloured eggs in batches of up to six on the twigs of
The newly-hatched, 4.5mm long larvae consume part of their
eggshells and then wander off some distance to find suitable resting sites among the unfurling
spring oak leaves.
Growth is rapid, and larvae shed skins to move into the second instar
in roughly one week. Here larva is on Quercus robur.
Colouration changes rather
dramatically in moving from second to third instar to the right.
As they enter fourth instar and when fully grown, they are similar to the larvae of Saturnia pavonia, being pale green with six small yellowish tubercles per segment, a yellow subspiracular band on the abdominal segments, and long white hairs on the tubercles.
The inner wall is of a fine mesh, with the outer being coarser. The pupa is clearly visible through both layers of the cocoon which is spun up among twigs and leaves.
The outline of the male antennae are clearly visible in this image courtesy of Tony Pittaway.