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Please is this a Vapourer moth caterpiller or could it be the Scarce vapourer. It was sitting on a young cooking apple tree, in Cambridgeshire, near grass, Elms and a pond.
All the pictures I could find of Vapourers showed the 4 bristle bunches at the front all pale, is this variable?
Hello Dinahsaw, yes it certainly looks like a Vapourer to me.
Yes, I agree - vapourer, Orgyia antiqua.
Here's one that looks largely like yours.
...Apart from those two front bristle brushes. The bristles to vary in colour.
But it has other characters that are correct for O. antiqua and wrong for O. recens, such as the mid-way side-brushes.