polyphemus, etc.

Chuck Vaughn aa6g at aa6g.org
Mon Aug 14 13:05:18 EDT 2000

"Martha V. Lutz & Charles T. Lutz" wrote:
> It is the same here in Iowa.  Weather determines the timing of the first
> brood emergence, which determines what happens with the potential second
> brood.  We are right between zone 4 and zone 5 with regards to botanical
> winter-hardiness.  Is Boston a zone 4?

There was one year that I raised polyphemus for the entire season. They
were much more complicated than just one or two broods. I'm in the SF
Bay area. The first hatched in May, the second brood in July and a few
in September. Most of the second brood hatched in July but some wintered
over. Most of the July brood wintered over but some hatched in September.
I managed one mating out of those but I gave the eggs away as I was tired
of raising them by that time.<g> In addition the broods stretched out
enough so that by the time one finished the next was starting. Effectively
they were almost continuous throughout the summer. It seems that nature had
all her bases covered for this species.

> Since you have extensive experience, I would be interested to hear whether
> any of your polyphemus have ever mated if they were full sibs.  The other
> Saturniids I raise are essentially promiscuous, but the polyphemus moths
> seem to have a built-in incest taboo.  They also have the most pronounced
> dimorphism with regard to their antennae, which may or may not have
> anything to do with their reluctance to mate with full sibs.  Anyone have
> information or comments about this phenomenon???

I never had any siblings mate. I did have some success with cousins.

Chuck <aa6g at aa6g.org>

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