Where are the butterflies?

Joined
Oct 25, 2007
Messages
4,351
Location
Potomac Falls, VA
This time last year we had a small swarm of swallowtails on the button and butterfly bushes. My wife's Master Gardener friends have also noticed fewer in our area - N. VA. She was able to pick off two caterpillars from the milkweed garden. One hatched over the weekend.

We usually see more monarchs later in August.

butterfly.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


2 Seems to be the only yellow swallowtail
butterfly-2.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

3
butterfly-3.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

4 - This Monarch appeared to have just got its wings as we were out walking on a trail.
butterfly-4.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
271
Location
Minnesota
Still have lots of Monarch visiting our milkweeds, but it seem like the eggs are getting eaten by ants and the larvae might be getting eaten by birds or tree frogs. Had a bunch, but now they are all gone. Sad.

Z6A_1704_DxO.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 
Joined
Oct 25, 2007
Messages
4,351
Location
Potomac Falls, VA
Still have lots of Monarch visiting our milkweeds, but it seem like the eggs are getting eaten by ants and the larvae might be getting eaten by birds or tree frogs. Had a bunch, but now they are all gone. Sad.

View attachment 1666519
Good image. We were wondering since milkweed is toxic to everything but milkweed bugs and monarchs, what could be getting them?

Hopefully, they are on the way further south to lay more eggs!
 
Joined
Apr 27, 2018
Messages
271
Location
Minnesota
I have seen birds picking through the milkweeds and there are lots of tree frog droppings on the leaves so I assume that the toxicity level isn't too high to deter the predators. Either way the larvae disappear almost overnight. Very disappointing. Some people have captured the caterpillars and raise them in screen boxes to protect them from being eaten. I did this as a kid and so did my kids.
 
Joined
Oct 25, 2007
Messages
4,351
Location
Potomac Falls, VA
We saw many more butterflies in September this year. We had several chrysalis form in the last few weeks with at least three successful hatches. We have 4 more waiting for hatching with fingers crossed its not too cold.

The milkweed is now getting eaten by these new caterpillars - that my wife says are some type of moth. Very many are finishing off the last leaves of the milkweed.
_DSC2255.jpg
Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
 
Joined
Nov 14, 2006
Messages
5,607
Location
Winnipeg, Canada
We saw many more butterflies in September this year. We had several chrysalis form in the last few weeks with at least three successful hatches. We have 4 more waiting for hatching with fingers crossed its not too cold.

The milkweed is now getting eaten by these new caterpillars - that my wife says are some type of moth. Very many are finishing off the last leaves of the milkweed.
Possibly Euchaetes egle - Milkweed Tussock Moth
 

Latest threads

Links on this page may be to our affiliates. Sales through affiliate links may benefit this site.
Nikon Cafe is a fan site and not associated with Nikon Corporation.
Forum post reactions by Twemoji: https://github.com/twitter/twemoji
Forum GIFs powered by GIPHY: https://giphy.com/
Copyright © Amin Forums, LLC
Top Bottom