Saturday, May 8, 2010

Fritillary nursery

Our native passionflower has just one lone vine that's returned this spring. The other day, I watched a Gulf fritillary circle it several times. "No, no, no!" I begged. "There's just barely enough vine as it is!" Well, she didn't listen to me. Obviously. Because I found not one fritillary caterpillar but TWO. Plus numerous eggs! So I gently relocated one (photo above) to our other passionflower vine, which is more vigorous and has plenty of leaves. When the other one (photo below) gets bigger, I'll relocate it, too.

A fritillary egg

And then take a look at the fat caterpillar that's chomping on one of our plants in the back yard! I suspect it's a moth species of some sort. Reminds me of the woolly bear caterpillars we had in Corpus Christi when I was a kid.

UPDATE May 12, 2010–Alas, the child I transferred to a different passionflower didn't survive. I checked the next day, and it had died. So I won't do that again. I guess a caterpillar must stay on the same plant upon which it was hatched.

1 comment:

Lorilee said...

Last summer, they pretty much stipped my smaller vine, but it came out fuller than ever this year. I had Chrysallises (however you spell it) everywhere!

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