Gulf Frit Update

misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)August 14, 2011

There are plenty of gulf frits nectaring in my garden every day now. I found a pair mating the other day -


I've found three cats on the vines, brought them in to raise myself, and today I saw a female lay an egg on what I thought was one of the passionvines. Well, turns out she missed and laid it on the dead Japanese climbing fern next to it - I pull up JCF at the ground, let it die, then go back and pull it off the fence. This is one very invasive vine! I hadn't pulled it off the fence yet, being remiss in my gardening this year -


I brought in the sprig it was on, put it in a water pick, and added some tender, new growth P. incarnata next to it, so the hatchling can immediately find something to eat, then put it in a cage to raise myself.

Here's hoping that the mating will result in many more eggs!

Sherry

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bettyd_z7_va(7)

They are such beautiful butterflies. Wish we had them here.

I hope you find many more to raise.

Name one after me. lol

Betty

    Bookmark   August 14, 2011 at 7:14PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Well, I ran into another mating couple yesterday, and I've been seeing females laying lots of eggs yesterday and today, plus I found very early instar cats on the undersides of many passionvine leaves. There were about 10 adults nectaring in my garden this afternoon, plus several in my front yard, so it looks like the normal gulf frit masses are back - YAY!
Hopefully, many of them will move into other areas and keep the numbers up!

Sherry

    Bookmark   August 16, 2011 at 4:31PM
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ronkw(8b LA)

Hey Misssherry, and Friends,
I came to post pics for the first time since spring, pics of GF too.
Late this morning, their color, appeared to me, even more stunning and intense than usual, so I grabbed the camera.
Try as I might, these photos just don't do em justice!

    Bookmark   August 16, 2011 at 5:25PM
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ronkw(8b LA)

I forgot to mention I have half a jillion, maybe just a zillion GF cats, with enough passion vine for all of them.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2011 at 5:37PM
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klflorida

Oh good eye Sherry. I was in my garden today wondering where the frits might be; glad to hear their getting around and can't wait for them to find my garden this year.

I planted a new vine in a shaded area of the garden hoping to entice the zebra longwing.

You all keep them healthy till they get here!

    Bookmark   August 16, 2011 at 5:52PM
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ladobe

I used to bring their livestock home from lep or business trips to southern CA in the 60's, 70's & 80's, and from lep trips to southern AZ and HI in the 80's & 90's. But its been a lot of years since I last reared them, probably in Hawaii in the mid 90's. So its been a long dry spell since I have even seen this species except in my SC.

Beautiful pictures folks, thanks for sharing.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2011 at 8:09PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

'Will do, kltampa! It'd be great if you could get some zebras!
Ron, your pictures are great, but you're right, they hardly do them justice, especially the newly emerged males. Gulf frits are my second favorite butterfly, running a close second to pipevine swallowtails. I've always wanted to get a good, clear picture of a newly emerged male gulf frit nectaring next to a newly emerged male pipevine swallowtail, with the sun hitting the turquoise of the PVS - wouldn't that be beautiful?!
This picture of a male sorta gets it -

How's your property after the tornado, Ron?

Sherry

    Bookmark   August 16, 2011 at 8:12PM
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klflorida

Now that is a beautiful photo; worthy of publication even. Great job.
Kathy

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 9:19AM
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bob_71(z7 MD)

Outstanding detail on that egg photo!

Bob

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 12:01PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Thanks, y'all!
I was watching a pair of gulf frits flirting in my garden a few hours ago, and they 'got married' right there in front of me! Things are really hopping out there with the gulf frits - orange everywhere - I love it!
Sherry

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 5:01PM
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mary_littlerockar(8a-7b mid Arkansas)

Fantastic photos, everyone. The egg shot is amazing. Thanks so much for sharing.

Now I have great examples of a 'new to me' butterfly to watch for. I did plant maypop vines for them but have yet to meet this little beauty in person.

~Mary

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 5:15PM
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