Grade 5 students came in from recess to report that something was eating their bean plants. I assumed the problem was due to the lubber grasshoppers we had seen near the garden a few days earlier. (photo below shows a cluster of immature lubber grasshoppers that are darker colored than the mature green version.)
When the class went out to look, there were no lubber grasshoppers in sight, but the students quickly found the real problem – the caterpillars on the underside of many of the bean leaves. They discovered that the curled leaves were most likely to hide the caterpillars. They carefully pulled them off the leaves and dropped them into the killing jar. We left them for a day to observe and then killed them with soapy water.
Further investigation allowed us to identify the caterpillar on the IFAS website. It is the longtailed skipper caterpillar, often appropriately enough called the bean leafroller.