The History Of The Catalpa Worm

Discussion in 'Fishing Bait Review' started by Ace, Feb 28, 2006.

  1. Ace

    Ace New Member

    Gastonia N
    The name catalpa comes from the name given to the tree by the Native American Indian tribe the Catawba of South Carolina. It is said that the Indians smoked the bean pods for a hallucinogenic effect, so the tree became known as the Indian Cigar Tree.
    In the late 1700s, this tree was planted all over the Eastern United States with Southwest Georgia, South Alabama, and South-Central and Southeast Mississippi being the original ranges.
    There is the Northern Catalpa, which is a short-lived, coarse-textured tree that tolerates a wide range of growing conditions. Growth is rapid at first but slows down with age. The main ornamental feature is panicles of flowers produced in early summer. These are white with yellow and purple markings. The Southern catalpa is smaller than the Northern catalpa and reaches about 30 to 40 feet tall.

    The catalpa trees are the only host for the catalpa sphinx moth. This moth larva known as the catalpa worm devours the leaves of the tree and often completely strip the tree.Catalpas produce new leaves readily and trees usually refoliate promptly.

    Moths first appear in the first of June and deposit eggs ranging from 300 to 1,000 on the underside of the leaves. Eggs hatch in 5-7 days and young larvae feed together on the leafs until they are about 2 1/2 to 3 inches long .Then they degan to drop to the ground.

    Southern trees produce fruit that are long, slender, thin-walled, pod-like capsules that dangle from the ends of twigs. They look like long cigars about 3/8 inch in diameter and 16 inches long. The fruit dries to a brownish color and eventually splits open lengthwise.The fruits mature by October and are held on the tree until spring.

    Trees begin to flower by age seven and are producing good seed crops. Seeds are naturally shed in late winter as the drying fruits split.
    The catalpa worm, a green caterpillar that lives on the catalpa tree but is better known as catfish bait.They sport a black head and tail with a neon strip down either side of its back. Best way to fish them is on a Carolina rig with 1/2 once egg sinker 1/0 circle hook fished on bottom.A bright fluorescent green fluid oozes from its body that smells sweet, which is attractiveness to catfish. This sweet aroma and liveliness of this worm make it very appealing to catfish.

    Harvesting the worm is best from June through November, with the largest hatches produced in late spring and again in late summer. A single tree may hold 500 worms. To gather the worms, place a tarp or piece of plastic under the tree and shake it until the worms fall off.

    The worm can be preserved alive by placing it in cornmeal and packing it in a glass jar and frozen. When thawed, they become as lively as the day they were froze. This is because their metabolism slows down while eating and, therefore, freezes in its natural state.

    Ace :0a18: :D