So excited! Found more BST cats!

sandpapertongue(7a VA)September 12, 2013

I found one BST way back in June, and I had so much fun watching him become a butterfly.

Then, despite my stalking my dill and parsley on a daily basis, I could not find a single other little cat, nor did I ever see eggs.

But today I found 6 of them! Five were on a carrot plant and the 6th littlest guy was nibbling on a dill that had long gone to seed and looked dead and dry.

I promptly brought them inside and I can't wait to see what they do. I really hope they don't plan to overwinter...it's still early for that right?

Sorry to the upside down picture, can't seem to figure out to fix it. Do you all think the box is big enough to support 6 cats? I have a bigger one for when they are ready to pupate. If this is too small I can move them to that one. I like the clear plastic for when they are small though.

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Leafhead

This will be the batch that overwinters as chrysales. I found mine went back and forth between host plants s any problems at all.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2013 at 5:00PM
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terrene(5b MA)

Congrats on finding more cats! Very exciting!

I have 9 BST chrysalises in the aquarium tank and 9 cats in a container. I was convinced that these 18 would all be over-wintering because it is getting late here, but there is a chrysalis darkening today that is going to eclose tomorrow.

From what I understand, even an earlier season chrysalis can decide to over-winter. It is likely that at least one or more of your cats will over-winter. It took me a couple years, but I figured out a way to do so successfully by putting them in a mesh sleeve that is hung on the side of the house.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2013 at 9:59PM
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docmom_gw Zone 5 MI(5)

I agree with Leafhead. Those will emerge next spring. Just have that parsley, fennel, dill and carrots ready, and you'll have another batch to raise. And yes, that container should be big enough for all six cats for as long as you want to keep them in there.

Martha

    Bookmark   September 12, 2013 at 10:01PM
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sandpapertongue(7a VA)

So, as of 10/14, all of my BSTs have eclosed! 8 in total. So great to see them fly away. Fingers crossed for an extended warm spell for these guys!

    Bookmark   October 14, 2013 at 8:08PM
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docmom_gw Zone 5 MI(5)

Wow! I'm surprised, but glad you got to see them fly away. Hope they have a chance to get another generation in before the freezes hit. Is there much left around you for nectaring. And do you have host plant material nearby? Any swallowtail around here would find pretty slim pickings.

Martha

    Bookmark   October 15, 2013 at 4:47PM
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sandpapertongue(7a VA)

I hope so too. There isn't too much blooming around. Some crepe myrtle, neighbor has some mums, just random things. I really hope there will be enough for them to nectar on.

I have lots of carrot tops and parsley still, so I've been checking for eggs and cats. But I haven't seen anything so far.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2013 at 10:48PM
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