Fertile ova?

Kurt Jacobs morphidae at earthlink.net
Fri Aug 25 20:29:08 EDT 2000

I had a female atlas moth actually emerge three (3) days before a male.  I
put them together in my breeding cage for a week, but never saw a pairing.
They were unsupervised, hehe, for many 14 hour stretches, so i may have
missed a pairing.  She began to lay eggs near the end of this week of
togetherness,  and first laid a nice clump, then a lot of singles here and
there, usually in close groups of three (3) or four (4) eggs.  One other
note of interest is that she did not get her wings expanded nicely before
hardening, but was active and appeared healthy otherwise.

The eggs are firm and have a nice hard shell.  They are oblong shaped and
are 5/64" x 7/64" (2mm x 3 mm, metric is nice sometimes).  Cream colored
with some reddish brown staining here and there.  One week old today (August
25).  I can sort of see that worm like c-shape in some of them, but it is
not real pronounced as of yet anyway.

Is there any test to see if the eggs are fertile.  I have only 40 of them,
which i thought was odd, but i didnt find any info on the usual number per

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