Caterpillar pest id?

So now that I actually have a mountain of plums on my tree, I’m observing lots of holes in the leaves and fruitlets with little holes in them. I discovered this bug on one of the fruitlets. Can anyone tell me what it is and what to use to get rid of it? I ended up using Monterey Garden Insect Spray on the trees to try and get rid of them as I had some in the garage. The caterpillar is about 1/2" long, pretty small. Thanks!

Donny, not sure what this caterpillar is, but you can try to identify it using this site:

Or, you can post photos (you’ll need a larger photo than this, so folks can zoom in on it) here for an ID:

Most caterpillars can be controlled using Spinosad.

Patty S.

Thanks Patty for the ID site. I’ll look it up right now.

Thankfully the stuff I used has Spinosad in it. Thanks again for the information, I appreciate it.

You might have some earwig damage going on… Holes in the fruit and leaves is kinda their hallmark… Especially if you’re not seeing large amounts of caterpillars.

I’ve seen a handful of caterpillars but it could definitely also be earwig damage, after looking at some pictures online. I had no idea earwigs could do that type of damage. I was reading the Spinosad is also good for dealing with those as well. If that doesn’t work, I’ll try the oil in a cup method. Thanks!

I searched like crazy for an i.d., but no luck. It’s difficult to id many of these guys from photos because they change so dramatically throughout their life cycles.
Not seeing any webs or tents around are you? The many different types of web worms are small like that and resemble the one in your photo. They are starting to appear here now also.

Appleseed, I’ve never seen tentworms here in S. California (had them like mad in Indiana, though). Donny, I have to use Sluggo Plus under all my fruit trees for both snails and earwigs. Works well, safe, organic.

No tents or webs. I’ll definitely stop by my local nursery and grab some of the sluggo stuff. Here is a picture of the fruitlet. Earwig or caterpillar damage or both? Sorry it is a little out of focus.

Well you guys are lucky, but I think you do have web worms in southern Ca. and my experience is that a lot of folks will just call them “tent caterpillars”. In fact, here everybody calls everything with a web in a tree a “tent caterpillar”.

I wish I knew more about insects, but that is just too huge a field for me to start trying to learn about. I’d have to forget a bunch of more important things to make room in my memory bank.

Thanks for searching for me Appleseed, I appreciate it. I did try and look as well and couldn’t come up with anything definitive. The one caterpillar that I posted a picture of is definitely a goner so I’m hoping the Spinosad and the Sluggo will keep them and the earwigs from chomping my fruit.

Jeff, we may have them, I just have never seen them :slight_smile: I think that if California does have them, it may be further north? Have never seen any webbing or tenting behavior in my area, or in anywhere I’ve been in San Diego county, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t here. Just haven’t seen it.