Pipevine Gains and Losses

rickinla(8B SW AL)August 20, 2013

I finally found some Pipevine Swallowtail cats on my Pipevine a few days ago and moved the potted Pipevine into the barn under Metal Halide lights. The next morning of the 5 cats on the vine, 3 were missing, 1 was clearly dead, and 1 was doing well. The remai Inge cat has tripled in size.

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rickinla(8B SW AL)

Today I found 5 or 6 more, transferred them to a potted Pipevine, and moved them into the barn. They are entering their 2nd instar and 1 shed after moving. Hopefully my numbers work out a little better this time, and the wasps, flies, parasites, etc stay outside.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 11:25AM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

I'm glad you've got one healthy cat left, but I wonder what happened to the others? If your barn is as full of spiders and other critters as my garage - I'm in the country - they probably got them.

Sherry

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 11:26AM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

I hadn't read your second post when I posted, but are you sure your barn is a safe place?

Sherry

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 11:27AM
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rickinla(8B SW AL)

Not spiders, no spiders in this barn. my wife is OCD about spider webs and sprays every 3 to 4 months. I think a parasite got to them since 2 were on the floor the next morning and not doing well. I hope the buzz from the lights keeps the other predators away. I hope I got the new batch in before something got to them. My potted Pipevine is too tall to cage, growing on 6ft bamboo poles and I'd rather not start cutting it up if I don't have to.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 11:45AM
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bandjzmom(7 NWGeorgia)

Congrats on the Pipevine cats! Lucky you. I have not had them here yet, but I am thinking that this year might be my lucky year. I am seeing a LOT of Pipevine SWT's in my yard right now. One of them is bound to find the Pipevine. I think that all sorts of critters eat caterpillars. If you really want to ensure their survival, I guess the only real way would be to take cuttings of the Pipevine and put them into water and then cage them with the cats. But, I know that you already knew that. :o) Good luck!!!
Angie

    Bookmark   August 20, 2013 at 5:31PM
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rickinla(8B SW AL)

Is this a female Pipevine Swallowtail? She was nectaring on the Butterfly Bush growing next to my Pipevine.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 6:03PM
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rickinla(8B SW AL)

Here's another shot showing the top side.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 6:04PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

It's a black form female tiger swallowtail. The two keys are the totally black body and the vertical tiger stripe (like males and yellow females have) that shows on her underside.

She's a beauty!

Sherry

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 6:38PM
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rickinla(8B SW AL)

Well bummer, I was hoping for more cats. The ones I moved into the barn are thriving, 6 for 6 still on the potted vine.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2013 at 7:10PM
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joncongaroo(Phoenix(Ahwatukee)AZ)

It's so hot here our pv cats glow red.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2013 at 5:19PM
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Leafhead

lol
Anyone down in Florida raising any Polydamas?

    Bookmark   August 22, 2013 at 7:47PM
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rickinla(8B SW AL)

The red coloration is pretty cool. I wonder why they're that color?

My lone survivor from the 1st batch was there this morning and gone this afternoon. I'm pretty sure it wandered off to form a chrysalis. The other 6 are still on the vine and growing quickly. I think these guys grow quicker than the Gulf Fritillaries.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2013 at 10:30PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Sometimes my pipevine swallowtail cats would be a bit red -

Sherry

    Bookmark   August 22, 2013 at 10:48PM
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rickinla(8B SW AL)

Are these Pipevine eggs? I hope.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 8:17AM
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tom123_gw

In my garden the Polydamas cats often appear red, while the Pipevines are more black.

I have lots and lots of Polydamas. They stick around the vines and don't seem to wander away. The major control for them appears to be wasps and ants that carry away the eggs.

We got about three inches of rain yesterday. Can't remember an August that has been wetter than this one. I'm sure you are getting a lot also, Sherry.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 8:29AM
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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)

Rick,

Yes, those are PV eggs. Looks like you've got a lot of them. Have fun raising all of them.

Sandy

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 9:41AM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Yes, those are eggs, Rick, although it looks like at least one of them has hatched? Pipevine swallowtail eggs are various shades of red and are usually laid in clusters.

Congrats, congrats!!

Yes, Tom, it's rained more this year than I can remember. Usually, the bottom of the hollow doesn't have water in it in July and August, but it has this summer - after the rain, the water flows, like the little stream that's there in winter and spring.

Sherry

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 9:48AM
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rickinla(8B SW AL)

That's great news. I found that group on the outside vine, plus a smaller group on a potted vine outside; both groups have been moved inside the barn. When I went back out to water the potted plants (right before the rain), I noticed another small group, they're still out in the rain. There has been a busy mama around here, hopefully she'll visit again when I'm out there.

    Bookmark   August 24, 2013 at 10:10AM
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