Where Do Caterpillars Live?

B A Bowen Photography/CC-BY-2.0

Caterpillars live mostly in hedges and bushes. They can often be found in a garden or backyard, where they live on the underside of leaves of their host plants to hide from predators. Caterpillars are also found in dark places, like long grass.

Most caterpillars hide in shelters during the day and only feed at night. Some caterpillars and plants co-evolve to the caterpillar’s advantage. Caterpillars’ host plants produce toxic compounds, which prevent herbivores from feeding on their foliage. As an adaptive mechanism, caterpillars can take in these toxins and effectively use them for protection against predators. The monarch caterpillar and its host plant milkweed are a classic example of this co-adaptation.