Thursday, October 2, 2008

Flitting, not knitting.

The life and times of passion flower pests. . .

First we have the eggs.
Lots and lots and lots of eggs. Eggs on every tendril and every leaf of every plant I own.

Then the eggs hatch and we have teensy-tinsy, itty-bitty, almost not seeable little caterpillars. Don't you worry about them tho, they'll eat and eat till there are no more leaves and not very many flowers and then they'll be big.

This is the caterpillar from the Zebra Longwing butterfly after it's eaten a plantsworth of leaves.

Once they've had their fill of leaves, buds, tendrils and flowers, they start to hang upside down. They become a chrysalis and then they hang there for another 10 days to two weeks.
See the pretty gold on the chrysalis? After they eat all my plants, the least they could do is make REAL gold so I can get something out of it!
This is what I get out of it. Lots and lots of lovely zebra longwing butterflies flitting around the yard. Mostly flitting around the vines laying more eggs to eat more of the leaves.

I also get gulf fritillaries - lovely orange butterflies. There are so many of them in the backyard that they land on you when you walk out there.

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