Saw a horde of caterpillars on a rose bush in our garden at the weekend that I’m sure we’d never seen dining there before.
Turns out that they are not caterpillars as that term is for butterflies and moths only. These are instead the larvae of rose sawflies, as indicated on an RHS blog (What’s eating the rose foliage?).
The blog goes on to say:
“Sawfly larvae are curious little things. The slightest disturbance of the plant causes them to curl their bodies so their ‘tails’ are pointing away from the leaf.”
So I went ahead and tapped the stem, causing all the larvae to immediately stick their tails in the air. Marvellous to watch.