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Wooly Bear Caterpillar (Pyrrharctia isabella)Averaging 1.5 inches in length, this larva of the Isabella Moth is common throughout North America.  Subject of popular weatherlore, it is written that when the brown band of stiff hairs around the middle of the caterpillar is wide, the upcoming winter weather will be mild.  If the brown band around the middle of the caterpillar is narrow, the upcoming winter weather will be severe.  In truth, the caterpillars become less black and more brown as they age. 

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Photographs by Valerie Lykes