Indiana is somewhat comparable with low altitude NW Europe : same kind of vegetation and farming practices. When you travel in Indiana, you feel a little bit like in the North of France / lowland Germany (with lower population density).
The big difference is the very low number of Satyrinae species (not a single one Satyrinae species encountered in 5 days !) and Lycaenidae (only 2 species). In Europe, Satyrinae are the easiest species to encounter !
Another difference is the bigger number of Papilionidae species (and specimens) and the presence of few "neotropical-origin" species : Junonia, Papilio cresphontes...
John Shuey may be right about the Polygonia. Comma is much more common. This one is so worn that it has the lighter-colored look of a progne, and the silver mark is kind of in between the usual P. comma curve and the angular line of progne...
Those are delightful pictures and it sounds like a most rewarding trip with a GOOD guide !
I believe, those other two "hairy" looking but, sharply dressed caterpillars were 2 different species of "tussock moth" (subfamily: Lymantriinae). The caterpillars are lovely creatures and fun to hold (like the wooly bear type); and no hidden poisonous spines like those "saddleback" caterpillars and the like...
Thanks for posting your pictures of the trip.
Last Edit: Aug 20, 2020 11:17:12 GMT -8 by trehopr1
Great pictures and it's very interesting to hear how my state's fauna appears to a European. It does seem you got a good selection of the typical species.
A few comments:
The P. progne appears to be a female of P. comma, the two are very similar but Polygonia progne is smaller and the underside is grayish while the female P. comma is more brown." While I have seen P. progne here in Indiana a number of times, P. comma is exponentially more abundant.
As mentioned, I agree that the Speyeria is almost certainly S. cybele rather than C. aphrodite as the latter is much less common.
Both of the caterpillars with lots of setae I believe are Halysidota tesselaris, a pretty common tiger moth here.
The striped caterpillars, as John S. suggested are indeed Notondontidae, more specifically I believe a Datana sp.