help - I need leaves!!!

Nigel Venters nigelventers at
Thu Apr 11 13:13:38 EDT 2002

So in précis...your actual experience is based on "reputed" information on
Bombyx mori and a small batch of  larvae of Actias luna that went wrong?
Otherwise you are using "quite well documented" information on
Checkerspots..I just wanted to know.
P.S. BTW...for your records the lettuce does not have to be "Wilted"

----- Original Message -----
From: "Neil Jones" <neil at>
To: "Nigel Venters" <nigelventers at>; <leps-l at>
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2002 5:07 PM
Subject: Re: help - I need leaves!!!

> On Thursday 11 April 2002 03:06 pm, Nigel Venters wrote:
> > Neil wrote:
> > >I suspect that moving the larvae onto a different hostplant may not be
> > > good
> > >idea. It depends on the species but some don''t cope with a change
> > >Bombyx mori the "true" silkworm for example  is reputed to be able to
> >> survive on wilted lettuce but once put on Mulberry it won't go back on
> >  Lettuce.
> >
> >
> >
> .>Neil...have you tried this
> > experiment....and found that the larvae will definitely not accept
> > after eating Mulberry leaves? Or is it just hearsay and speculation on
> > behalf? How about some examples of species from your own breeding when
> > foodplant change was not accepted?
> > Nigel
> I am suprised you ask the question since logically you should know the
> answer already. I said "Bombyx mori the "true" silkworm for example  is
> reputed to be able to survive on wilted lettuce ..." Note "reputed to"
> The clear implication is that I haven't tried it or I wouldn't have used
> phrase.
> I did once have a small batch of  larvae of Actias luna the Indian Moon
> die on me after I changed from one kind of willow to another. However this
> hardly scientific since I didn't exclude any other variables. It could
> been contaminated foodplant or they might have died anyway.
> Lepidoptera being fussy about their foodplants is quite well documented.
> One species of Checkerspot has been shown to discriminate between
> different strains of the same plant. This doesn't mean it happens all the
> time but it can happen.
> --
> Neil Jones- Neil at
> "At some point I had to stand up and be counted. Who speaks for the
> butterflies?" Andrew Lees - The quotation on his memorial at Crymlyn Bog
> National Nature Reserve


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