Author Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?  (Read 1012 times)

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Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« on: August 26, 2019, 12:12:15 PM »
  I just started raising Monarch butterflies and just had my 1st chrysalis form and have a further 2 caterpillars fasten their backsides in preparation to form their chrysalides.

Anyone else interested in similar?  I find the process of metamorphosis fascinating.

Area covered by monarchs (Danaus plexippus, eastern migratory population) in their overwintering areas in Mexico between 1993 and 2018. (click to enlarge)


The Monarch Butterfly is on the cusp of becoming an endangered species.  If only the human species would somehow have some sort of a population decrease.  10 billion humans by 2050, that's such crap.

peace
Hog

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2019, 12:46:25 PM »
Kind of related...
I worked for about a year as an insectary technician cultivating maggots. I know that sounds like some made up junk but, the maggots were actually grown as food for tiny predatory wasps used for natural fly control. Over 5 million maggots in production each day. Pupated maggots which had been infected with wasp eggs sent as a subscription service to equestrian facilities and whatnot. It was the strangest job I ever had. Walking into the breeding room with thousands of Musca domestica clouding the air was especially intense. The first day on the job the dude who was training me suggested that I should not enter into that room stoned. So the next day I did- not for the feint of heart. But just like any other job, you eventually adjust to the horror of the thing. One of my buds who worked there ended up getting hired as a butterfly breeder for one of those touristy butterfly farm dealeos. How's that for a left turn from the grisly world of maggots back into the beauty of butterflies for a finish?


Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2019, 01:09:15 PM »
I am sure I am not the only one who finds the juxtaposition of the gentle pastime of butterfly husbandry with half-formed wishes for global genocide heartwarming.  This isn't the first time I've observed such a thing, either -- your average weedy vegetarian is a truly bloodthirsty creature when it comes to his own species provided the culling is done quietly, at some remove, and in a sanitary fashion.

j/k Hog; you're doing God's work.

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2019, 02:25:12 PM »
I knew a guy who got an AG Exemption for butterflies.So, depending on your area, you might be able to actual save $ in taxes if you can qualify.  You have to fill some forms, get appraised, and file some paperwork about your 'plan' to manage wildlife. More power to you, Hog. I try to plant stuff that butterflies like since we are in the corridor but never actually tried to raise them!

Project Monarch?! Hahahah. 


https://www.wildflower.org/project/project-milkweed 

 https://www.wildflower.org/learn/power-the-migration   

 Best Milkweeds 
Antelope-horns » Zizotes milkweed »
 Green milkweed »

Best Nectar Plants - Spring 
Prairie verbena » Purple coneflower »
 Black-eyed Susan »
 Texas lantana »
 Mealy blue sage »
 
Best Nectar Plants - Fall   

Gregg’s mistflower » Shrubby boneset »
 Maximilian sunflower »
 Fall aster »
 Frostweed »
     

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2019, 02:42:07 PM »
I am slightly more amused than disturbed by this thread, just sayin'...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jVI3YV-VATw

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2019, 01:51:42 PM »
  I just started raising Monarch butterflies and just had my 1st chrysalis form and have a further 2 caterpillars fasten their backsides in preparation to form their chrysalides.

Anyone else interested in similar?  I find the process of metamorphosis fascinating.

Area covered by monarchs (Danaus plexippus, eastern migratory population) in their overwintering areas in Mexico between 1993 and 2018. (click to enlarge)


The Monarch Butterfly is on the cusp of becoming an endangered species.  If only the human species would somehow have some sort of a population decrease.  10 billion humans by 2050, that's such crap.

peace
Hog
Hog, how many kids do you have?  None?  Then you've done your duty to your species.   

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2019, 01:54:15 PM »
I am developing my property into a micro- permaculture.  Seeding various areas for plants and flowers to support, bees, butterflies, and bird life.  My favorite is the hummingbird. 

I'm getting chickens, rabbits and in the spring, I will start a beehive.

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2019, 07:09:28 PM »
I found out where they reside when I watered a thick shrub on a hot day.

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #8 on: September 08, 2019, 06:58:53 PM »
3 days ago I had my first chrysalis open and out came a beautiful female Monarch butterfly.  Its wings never straightened out correctly, so she was euthanized.  I was surprised how emotionally affected I became, over a silly butterfly.

The day after another opened and another female emerged(process called eclosion). Within 30 minutes her wings had straightened out.  I kept her inside for a day then I released her.  I was holding her by the leading edges of her wings, and gave her a gentle toss up into the air.  Within seconds she was approaching 100 feet and easily cleared my trees and the neighbours trees on his farm.

This morning at about 10 AM EDT my third Monarch came out.  Its wings were all crumpled folded into quarters.  She hung upside down from her chrysalis and began to pump stored fluid from her caterpillar stages from her thorax into her wings. They straightened within minutes.  Then I noticed that she squirted a clear fluid onto the cardboard floor.  Apparently after the fluid is used to "hydraulically" straighten their wings, that fluid is returned to the body and thusly expelled.  Some call this liquid meconium, and its supposedly different colours for different species.  Same same as that first few bowel movements from a human baby following delivery.

Here's a human babies meconium, those of you who have reproduced will know all about this.

Here's a newborn babies 3rd BM

Though I have never sired offspring (that I know of) I have seen more than a few meconium filled diapers at the hospital.

The butterflies I am releasing now, if they make it to Mexico for late October, wil have a 9 month lifespan. They will overwinter in a specific forest in Mexico. Then once Winter breaks, they will head for the USA breeding and laying eggs in the outherish USA. Those eggs will hatch and then the following  cycles of breeding/egg laying/caterpillar to butterfly will happen 3 or four times with each butterfly having a 1 month lifespan before the last generation finally makes it to Canada where they breed and lay eggs.  The eggs are where my caterpillars came from. Since these butterflies born and raised in Canada will live for up to 9 times as long as the generations of butterflies that migrate Northward, they are physically larger than the generations that migrate North through the USA.

I wish I had some tags, but that will be for next year.  That's a 2 month migration for an insect with wings that are very brittle. https://monarchwatch.org/tagging/

 


I've got 5 chrysalids left with about 5 caterpillars still munching on milkweed.  I've got pics and vids that I'll post once I figure out how to post personal pics/vids.

Monarchs are on the top 10 endangered species list and are pollinators as well, so I don't mind helping out a bit. We are finally banning that chemical that hurts pollinators such as bees and butterflies. It comes into effect in a couple years up here, but I heard the USA has deferred such bans.
They are beautiful and the migration is almost as crazy as the penguin migration in Antarctica.

peace
Hog

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #9 on: September 08, 2019, 07:19:04 PM »
Once I saw on the Internet that Monarchs are thriving in Mexico.  But we almost never see them here anymore.

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #10 on: September 08, 2019, 07:50:37 PM »
Once I saw on the Internet that Monarchs are thriving in Mexico.  But we almost never see them here anymore.
Once I saw on the Internet...that would make a good thread.  Brilliant!

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #11 on: September 08, 2019, 07:53:21 PM »
Once I saw on the Internet...that would make a good thread.  Brilliant!

General Musings of Tangerine?

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #12 on: September 08, 2019, 07:55:00 PM »
General Musings of Tangerine?
Thoughts of Tangerine has a nice ring to it.

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #13 on: September 08, 2019, 07:57:57 PM »
Thoughts of Tangerine has a nice ring to it.

K_Dubb should write her a poem with that title.

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #14 on: September 08, 2019, 07:59:51 PM »
Once I saw on the Internet that Monarchs are thriving in Mexico.  But we almost never see them here anymore.
One problem is the local Mexicans illegally logging in the certain forests the Monarchs overwinter in. The WWF actually pays people to NOT log, but that's not 100% effective. They require older thicker trees in order to survive the occasional winter storm.  Apparently the thicker tree holds more heat gathered during daytime solar heating.  If the trees cant supply enough heating and the storm is bad many Monarchs can perish.  One year 80% of the overwintering Monarchs died.

There's programs for my friends South of the border to get free milkweed plugs for your butterfly gardens.
https://monarchwatch.org/bring-back-the-monarchs/milkweed/free-milkweeds-for-restoration-projects/

peace
Hog

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #15 on: September 08, 2019, 08:39:00 PM »
I had a fun time with some Luna moth cocoons as a school project in my youth.  They were released into the wild, not long after hatching.  Beautiful creatures.


Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #16 on: September 08, 2019, 10:51:13 PM »
One problem is the local Mexicans illegally logging in the certain forests the Monarchs overwinter in. The WWF actually pays people to NOT log, but that's not 100% effective. They require older thicker trees in order to survive the occasional winter storm.  Apparently the thicker tree holds more heat gathered during daytime solar heating.  If the trees cant supply enough heating and the storm is bad many Monarchs can perish.  One year 80% of the overwintering Monarchs died.

There's programs for my friends South of the border to get free milkweed plugs for your butterfly gardens.
https://monarchwatch.org/bring-back-the-monarchs/milkweed/free-milkweeds-for-restoration-projects/

peace
Hog
http://www.flightofthebutterflies.com/home/  Pretty amazing stuff.

There also is almost a "woo" factor when dealing with animal migrations- that, somehow, go between generations during the travel. Genetic memory?

https://www.wildflower.org/learn/power-the-migration
They seem to like Lantanas. Not enough water, here, to plant milkweeds effectively. But closer to the creek there is a nice bunch of milkweeds that attracts them and also, interestingly, Lightning Bugs. Sometimes it almost looks like a C2C caller seeing orbs there are so many!

https://www.texasmonthly.com/article/the-flight-of-the-texas-fireflies/ 



Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #17 on: September 27, 2019, 11:45:38 PM »
This morning was a nice sunny 70º day and I released my last Monarch that eclosed(came out of its chrysalis) yesterday.  He was my 5th male of the season so that made 10 live releases.  I'm at 43ºN latitude so my peak was  Sept 3-Sept 15.  The peak down at 19.4ºN at Rosario Mexico is Nov 10-Nov 22/19.  These Monarchs I have released over the last few weeks are head down to Mexico 2000 miles away. They'll stay down there til Spring then head North to Texas where they breed lay eggs/caterpillar/chrysalis butterfly. These smaller Monarchs now have lives on approx 1 month as they travel Northward again.  It takes them 3-4 generations to get back up to Canada where they breed/lay eggs/caterpillar/ chrysalis/butterfly and then stay alive for 8 months again as they travel South again.

My 2nd last male had a 5" wingspan measured from widest upper wingtip  to the other.  It looked quite large in my hand, much larger than the others. If any of the 10 looked like they could make it South, this one did  I released him Thursday AM.  As I held him properly by the leading edge behind his head I gave him a gentle toss up in the air and up up up he flew.  His wings beating the whole way.  Just as he cleared the pine trees, out of nowhere, three other Monarchs followed him over the pines and out of sight the 4 of them went.  It was quite the moment.  The first time this insect puts weight on its wings they work perfectly.  Just 2 weeks prior this butterfly was a pudgy caterpillar just pigging out on milkweed.  Now he's got a 2000mile trip in front of him. He even got to start his journey with some friends.

peace
Hog

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #18 on: September 30, 2019, 10:03:50 PM »
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/06/monarch-butterflies-raised-captivity-don-t-migrate

I had heard something of this a few weeks back or so.  While I can see the appeal of "raising" them, it might not be in their best interests.  Though I acknowledge, we are talking about butterflies.  If you have milkweed, they will come.

I  saw on some documentary that when they migrate from eastern Canada they take  a detour somewhere in the Great Lakes region.  It's apparently a genetic memory of a mountain that existed ages ago,

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #19 on: October 02, 2019, 07:47:16 PM »
Kind of related...
I worked for about a year as an insectary technician cultivating maggots. I know that sounds like some made up junk but, the maggots were actually grown as food for tiny predatory wasps used for natural fly control. Over 5 million maggots in production each day. Pupated maggots which had been infected with wasp eggs sent as a subscription service to equestrian facilities and whatnot. It was the strangest job I ever had. Walking into the breeding room with thousands of Musca domestica clouding the air was especially intense. The first day on the job the dude who was training me suggested that I should not enter into that room stoned. So the next day I did- not for the feint of heart. But just like any other job, you eventually adjust to the horror of the thing. One of my buds who worked there ended up getting hired as a butterfly breeder for one of those touristy butterfly farm dealeos. How's that for a left turn from the grisly world of maggots back into the beauty of butterflies for a finish?

Stories like this are why I keep coming back to bellchan. 8)

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #20 on: October 09, 2019, 06:03:11 PM »
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/06/monarch-butterflies-raised-captivity-don-t-migrate

I had heard something of this a few weeks back or so.  While I can see the appeal of "raising" them, it might not be in their best interests.  Though I acknowledge, we are talking about butterflies.  If you have milkweed, they will come.

I  saw on some documentary that when they migrate from eastern Canada they take  a detour somewhere in the Great Lakes region.  It's apparently a genetic memory of a mountain that existed ages ago,
That's exactly the reason the tagging programs ask if tagged Monarchs were raised by humans or were found wild.  The scientists can't use info derived by non-wild interventions.     Even though not scientifically stringent , I think it's interesting to raise a few and see what happens.  I think they are very sensitive to sun times.   It's 7:00pm EDT right now and the sun is below the horizon. Back in the Summer the Sun is in the same position just below the horizon at 9:50pm EDT.  There's some sort of clock at work. They seem to become active at 10-11am as the Sun warms them. I've never seen so many, even accounting for my increased awareness over the last few years.

peace
Hog

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #21 on: October 09, 2019, 06:18:39 PM »
Kind of related...
I worked for about a year as an insectary technician cultivating maggots. I know that sounds like some made up junk but, the maggots were actually grown as food for tiny predatory wasps used for natural fly control. Over 5 million maggots in production each day. Pupated maggots which had been infected with wasp eggs sent as a subscription service to equestrian facilities and whatnot. It was the strangest job I ever had. Walking into the breeding room with thousands of Musca domestica clouding the air was especially intense. The first day on the job the dude who was training me suggested that I should not enter into that room stoned. So the next day I did- not for the feint of heart. But just like any other job, you eventually adjust to the horror of the thing. One of my buds who worked there ended up getting hired as a butterfly breeder for one of those touristy butterfly farm dealeos. How's that for a left turn from the grisly world of maggots back into the beauty of butterflies for a finish?
I was a pig breeder for a few years and we would send the pregnant sows upstairs to the farrowing rooms where the babies would be born. There was a guy that worked up there, I was focused on breeding. 40 sows a week x live born=number of piglets to be sold to farms which fatten them up. We did mostly AI(artificial insemination) but you still require the smell of a boar to get the sow into a "good standing heat".  A couple nudges with my knee in her side and a hand on her back and her ears would point up and she would "lock" into place.  That's when you insert the applicator and open and supply the semen.  It comes in a tube exactly like a tube of toothpaste. You cut off the plastic tip and insert the tube into the applicator and hold it up like an IV bag.  Eventually the sow will literally suck the semen solution out of the tube within a few seconds.   It was a different job, that's for sure.
Anways the maggots upstairs in the pits under the farrowing room were crazy looking. I'd look under the floor and the entire surface would be a moving swarm of maggots.

Those breeding rooms sound crazy.

peace
Hog


Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #23 on: January 31, 2020, 07:45:20 AM »
https://nypost.com/2020/01/30/homero-gomez-gonzalez-prominent-butterfly-activist-in-mexico-found-dead-in-a-well/
That's bullshit.  I really hope that the guy had a coronary and simply fell into the well via gravity alone.(rather than a homicidal push)

Greed, it seems to kill everything that is good.

peace
Hog

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #24 on: January 31, 2020, 01:00:46 PM »
That's bullshit.  I really hope that the guy had a coronary and simply fell into the well via gravity alone.(rather than a homicidal push)

Greed, it seems to kill everything that is good.

peace
Hog


Yeah. Hopefully natural but the state of Mexico these days is bad and violent. Worse the cartels now get also involved in rare animal trade, illegal logging, overfishing, illegal mining, and crossing illegals all of which is hurting fragile environments, hurting threatened species, etc.

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #25 on: January 31, 2020, 03:49:50 PM »
Point the 1st:

A few years ago, a Black Witch moth (Ascalapha Odorata) flew off a wall and struck me in the chest and flew away. I felt "marked." A stunning omen, given I authored an essay on the little "money bats" back in the day. I can count on my one-toed left foot how many moths have collided with my mossy heart chakra.


Point the 2nd:

Elsewhere on this site, in a different lifetime, I wrote about hatching Sphinx moths for the purpose of invading local gardeners' tomato plants with glorious Sphinx moth eggs/tomato worms.

Some call it Chaotic Evil. I call it nature.

Often, science supply houses instruct young entomologists to destroy the moth after hatching, as it is considered a "pest."

Repugnant.

Fuck that weak shit. I mean REALLY. Fuck that.

It just encourages me to hatch a legion.


Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #26 on: January 31, 2020, 04:31:13 PM »
Point the 1st:

A few years ago, a Black Witch moth (Ascalapha Odorata) flew off a wall and struck me in the chest and flew away. I felt "marked." A stunning omen, given I authored an essay on the little "money bats" back in the day. I can count on my one-toed left foot how many moths have collided with my mossy heart chakra.


Point the 2nd:

Elsewhere on this site, in a different lifetime, I wrote about hatching Sphinx moths for the purpose of invading local gardeners' tomato plants with glorious Sphinx moth eggs/tomato worms.

Some call it Chaotic Evil. I call it nature.

Often, science supply houses instruct young entomologists to destroy the moth after hatching, as it is considered a "pest."

Repugnant.

Fuck that weak shit. I mean REALLY. Fuck that.

It just encourages me to hatch a legion.
I feel the need to replenish the local Luna colony.  I haven't seen one in years.


Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #27 on: January 31, 2020, 05:06:50 PM »

Yeah. Hopefully natural but the state of Mexico these days is bad and violent. Worse the cartels now get also involved in rare animal trade, illegal logging, overfishing, illegal mining, and crossing illegals all of which is hurting fragile environments, hurting threatened species, etc.
All those things you listed are horrible. It seems as though the Cartels are branching out from their primary business of trafficking in cocaine.  I wonder if that's out of necessity as the war on drugs tightens continues or simply because they have the means to organize such illicit activities.
 "8,493 people were murdered from 1 January to 31 March, a 9.6% rise from the year before."
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-48012923


peace
Hog

Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #28 on: January 31, 2020, 05:52:46 PM »
All those things you listed are horrible. It seems as though the Cartels are branching out from their primary business of trafficking in cocaine.  I wonder if that's out of necessity as the war on drugs tightens continues or simply because they have the means to organize such illicit activities.
 "8,493 people were murdered from 1 January to 31 March, a 9.6% rise from the year before."
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-48012923


peace
Hog
Mexico is in bad straits but I won't turn this thread to a border rant.  ;)   I think it is for many reasons when they are properly organized, like the Italian Ndrangheta for an example, is into everything from petty crime, counterfeiting, garage collection, drugs, prostitution, etc.  When not organized or their territory "plaza" is taken away by a rival they might resort to anything else to supply income. Unfortunately animals, fish, and logs are easy pickings. Mining is harder but they even enslave people to work them. They steal gasoline (often causing explosions) and anything not nailed down. And there could be the rare few who survived and now are trying to branch out into less violent crimes or crimes still lucrative but less potential punishment.

http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2019/10/2-dtos-plunder-forests-of-sierra.html

http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2019/01/illegal-logging-in-chihuahua-is-now.html

http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2019/03/covert-operation-operation-false-gold.html

http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2018/05/totoaba-bladders-cocaine-of-sea-of.html

Some are trying to fight back:

http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2019/12/cheran-michoacan-indigenous-towns.html



Anyone interested in raising of butterflies/moths?
« Reply #29 on: March 27, 2020, 08:08:03 AM »
The Monarch butterflies are now heading North.  They will lay eggs and then die, their children will then continue North. 3-4 generations later they arrive up here and further North.

Apparently this years count was down, again.  There was 53% less area covered by the overwintering Mexican forests in 2019/20 (2.83) vs. 6.05 hectares for the 2018/19 season. 
    "The drop is "not alarming" because the presence of butterflies in the previous season had been atypically high, "but we must remain vigilant so that it does not become a trend in the coming years," said Jorge Rickards, Director General of WWF Mexico."

Here is the graph of Monarchg Butterfly overwintering area coverage over the years.



I got most of my milkweed seeded.  I still need some tags, this year I'm going to do natural outside raising. If I can stick a tag on a few of them bonus, this years goal is to have the least human intervention as possible.

Hopefully all the Monarchs make it into the USA before the wall goes up.
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx x
Could my Bellgab.com friends please shout out when they see their first Monarchs?  Maybe I can make up a map to track their progress as they move North.

Has anyone ever seen the White morph of the Monarch?



peace
Hog