Io Moth - Attracting a male

HHuf hhuf at
Mon Aug 25 23:43:38 EDT 1997

Dear Chuck, most likely she has mated. Most female saturnids (silkmoths)
will stay where they emerged and call for males. If she sits quietly all
night and protrudes her ovipositor from the tip of her abdomen she is
sending a scent to attract males and hasnt mated yet. If she has mated she
will start laying eggs soon and fly around trying to escape. Usually they
can attract a mate the first night so she could mate and still be in
perfect condition. Of course these are the usual circumstances-not rules.
Im 42 years old and raised moths when I was school. This summer my 3
children and I raised about 300 caterpillars to cocoons and have about 300
left to go-if the leaves hold on here in Michigan. It really is a great
experience for kids. If she has not started laying eggs put her in a
container made of hardware cloth, or tether her with a small noose of
strong thread around her abdomen-at the joint near her legs. Males will
not stay more than a few minutes if they cant  get access to the female. A
tube made from wire mesh (hardware cloth) works well because they can mate
through the mesh and the female is protected from predators. Use the kind
with 1/4-3/8 mesh.
                                                Good Luck,

Sincerely,Mark Hufeld

Hhuf at

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