godley at hotmail.com
Mon Aug 24 13:13:27 EDT 1998
SW & others,
I've been having a few troubles with the buckeye's I'm trying to rear.
In short, MANY have been inexplicably dieing. I don't know if this is a
bacterial or other problem. The somewhat odd thing, is they seem to get
unusually large before this happens. By which I mean, they are about
1/4-1/2 larger in size than the ones that I successfully raised 6 weeks
ago. I am wondering if there is any afflication that would suppress
pupation and essentially cause them to keep eating until they
It was suggested to me by Pierre P. that there is some trouble raising
them solely on plantain. Has anybody else had similar experience? I'm
wondering if perhaps there isn't some essential chemical missing in
plantain that is needed to simulate pupation. The successful batch was
reared on a combo of plantain, snapdragon and an un-id. garden weed.
Since this was mostly striped, I have taken the new caterpillars indoors
and supplemanted their feeding with plantain from the local school-yard
play-field. I 've even transplanted some into my garden plot to the
horror & amusement of my co-gardeners. Unfortunately, I can't keep
buying flats of snapdragon (as I did earlier this summer) because it's
getting too expensive. But alas I didn't want all these funny lil guys
to crawl away & die.
Anyway, I don't think the problem is pesticides, because I accidentally
feed some once with snapdragon that had been sprayed. Unfortunately,
they twitched a great deal, curled up & made me well aware of my
mistake. Now they just, grow & grow, look fine, until one day they are
at the bottom all stretched out.
Suggestions or help gratefully welcomed... Laurel
Our lab currently focuses on experiments with Buckeye (Precis coenia),
and has had a successful colony for several years.
>scabrous at fcmail.com
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