how do they do it? seeing larvae

Liz Day beebuzz at
Mon Sep 3 00:26:17 EDT 2001

 >I think you need a room-sized insectary in sunlight for part of the day 
with potted saplings of a selection of candidate larval foodplants.

Apparently so, from the replies I've gotten.  You need to cage the female 
with some of the food plant and hope she acts naturally (I'm not clear on 
the size of the cage, but it's bigger than a large paper bag).   This is 
way past what is worth trying to undertake in an apartment unless you are 
really hellbent.   I already went through this with exotic plants - you can 
successfully raise demanding organisms, or you can have a life, but you 
can't have both.

The other method is to look through lots and lots of host trees outdoors 
and eventually find one.
You sure would think that just by chance eventually one would see a female 
tiger swallowtail laying eggs, even if they were out of reach.   They lead 
a mysterious life, like fish do underwater, in which they are never in view 
for long enough to tell what they're doing.    You need a tree house.


Liz Day
Indianapolis, Indiana, central USA  (40 N, ~86 W)
Home of budgerigar Tweeter and the beautiful pink inchworm (Eupithecia 
USDA zone 5b.  Winters ~20F, summers ~85F.  Formerly temperate deciduous 
daylight at


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