Rearing Orgyia larva

Julie K Stahlhut julie.stahlhut at
Mon Jun 28 19:12:35 EDT 1999

I found a caterpillar which I believe to be _Orgyia leucostigma_; it was
sitting placidly in a flowerbox full of geraniums and impatiens near my
lab today.  It's about 3 cm long; I've taken it home and given it a
choice of leaves, and it seems to be content to feed on maple.

Does anyone here have any experience in rearing this species?  Here are
my two main questions:

*  What are its pupation requirements (soil, leaves, twigs, etc.)?   My
copy of Covell says it's double-brooded, and I've never seen an _Orgyia_
larva much larger than the one I have now, so I would expect pupation
soon, and an adult later this summer, assuming it's healthy and

*  Also, I understand that if it is female, the adult will be wingless.
I'm planning to release the adult.  If it's a female, where should I put
her (tree trunk, soil, leaves, etc.)?

Thanks much in advance!


Who played "fetch" with a perching _Polygonia interrogationis_ last
week, and wishes she had it on videotape.



Julie K. Stahlhut julie.stahlhut at
Ph.D candidate p.p.,*, Biological Sciences
Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo, MI 49008

"With cognitive dissonance, people end up believing they have received
something valuable, something deserving of their loyalty, when in
reality all that has happened is the people who were torturing them

-- Richard Brodie, in _Virus of the Mind:  The New Science of the Meme_

* Paperwork pending.

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