Monday, September 17, 2012

Egg, larva, pupa, oh my!!!

Day 1:
. Collected 4 caterpillars
. Researched online both to identify and to ascertain their food source
. Placed them in jars with some leaves connected to a twig and for one caterpillar, an apple too
. Covered the jar with a paper towel held in place with a rubberband

Day 2:
. Awoke to discover:
. 1 caterpillar expired
. 1 caterpillar already encased in a cocoon
. 1 caterpillar busily munching on an apple
. 1 caterpillar just lazing around, but slowly changing in color and size

. Researched online again to attempt to discover a tastier food source for "Mr. Lazy"
. Collected 2 more caterpillars (make that 3 - apparently there was a bonus baby caterpillar)

It has provided great entertainment for the boys to observe the different caterpillars. 
Are you familiar with "wanderlust"?
Already 2 of the caterpillars have exhibited this behaviour - one is now in a cocoon and the other is busily encasing himself even as I type (I can actually hear him working).
Did you know that they need no extra water other than what is contained in the leaves/fruit they eat?

Noctuid Moth Caterpillar
(Day 1, apples)

 Lophocampa maculata - Spotted Tussock
(Day 1, "wanderlust", spun a cocoon overnight)

Danata Contracta - aka "Mr. Lazy"
(Day 1, Sycamore) 

Halysidota tessellaris - Banded Tussock
(Day 2, Wild Cherry - chowing down)
The "bonus" caterpillar is hiding somewhere in the jar with him.

Dasychira obliquata - Streaked Tussock
(Day 2, "wanderlust", started a cocoon overnight)

Will add to this post as things progress...
there will be no more pictures of this project, UNLESS I can choose and buy a camera in the next few days.

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