The Butterfly Experiment

Thursday, May 04, 2006

The Last supper...

well now all I have left are two butterflies just hatched today & one crysilis left & then that will be all. I had a "disabled" butterfly (his wings didnt form properly)but he disappeared the other day not to be found again after having him for 5 days. So far I have had 2 girls & 2 boys im not sure of the sex of my "newly borns" as they havent opened up their wings yet.

Above are some pics of my "butterfly children"

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

11th April 2006

Today a lovely boy (it had a black spot on each of his rear wing) Monarch butterfly was born that was part of this experiment :) he is looking well & is currently sitting on my indoor swanplant by the window so that he can go when he is ready (and so that the cats & hopefully the preymantis wont get him!!)

PS will post some pics when I can

Monday, April 10, 2006


My conclusion is that pumpkin can be used as a subsitute food for a limited time period. The reason for this is because I had almost half of the caterpillers die, plus two crysilis die. I still have 10 crysilis none have hatched yet.But I have found that the caterpillers still prefer the swan plant (milk weed) but will eat the pumpkin when necessary but not as a sole dietry food.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Day 15 4/04/06

Ok well ive had to do a rethink of how much pumpkin is too much. I have lost quite a few caterpillers & two crysalis's over the last few days. I have completely cleared out the tank of all pumpkin & have gone back to Swanplant only to see if i can rescue the rest. In saying that i now have a total of 4 crysalis and 10 caterpillers (2 due to go into crysalis) and today ive found 3 eggs.

The pumpkin that i have been using is the grey skinned "common" pumpkin found in NZ supermarkets. Swan plant is also known as milkweed & its latin name is Asclepias physocarpa.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Not much has happened over the last few days. I have had a few caterpillers die, not too sure of the reason. All the remaining caterpillers are eating the pumpkin but do enjoy having some swanplant from time to time for some variety. Three caterpillers have gone into crysilis, with a few more due to go any day soon.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Day Four 24/03/06

Not much change today. It looks like at least four caterpillers will be turning soon. i have added some driftwood to the tank so that there is something for them to hang from. I have noticed that they are all quite happy to eat the pumpkin but they definately do prefer the Swan Plant. The eggs that I have found have seemed not to have hatched. One caterpiller died today.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Day Three 23/03/06

Have noticed that as the bigger caterpillers are eating the pumpkin their stripes are become more of an orange colour rather than the usual yellow. Im still feeding them both swanplant & pumpkin.