Fewer butterflies this season

This topic contains 12 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Kiwilass 1 year, 3 months ago.

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  • #52757


    Hi all, this time last year I was almost overwhelmed by caterpillars and my tenacious little swan plant kept spotted with eggs well until June. The last month I have had a total of four. I’ve raised those safely, and have an oddly healthy looking swan plant. I was wondering if people other parts of Auckland and making the same observation.

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  • #52827


    I’m in Bucklands Beach Auckland and all my previous comment relate to that address.
    Have been going to see a friend in Pauanui a few times recently – seems to be heaps there so I bought some home to my plants as they were running out of food. Had 20 eclose and fly away in the last week.



    Here’s another version of the survey, for those of you who don’t do Facebook.




    I’m in Napier and I haven’t had any hatchings for probably six weeks or more.
    The season started off really well with plenty of butterflies around and I had to replenish my swan plant stocks two or three times.
    But it seemed like it was a really short season, I have just noticed a few eggs on the remnants of my swan plants this week but will see if they hatch, may need to source some more food if they do. I didn’t see the eggs being laid so don’t know where all the butterflies have gone.
    Is there any other way of completing the survey or do you have to be on facebook?



    I’m in Auckland (Papakura). I did complete the survey but it asked me to login to Facebook after hitting submit so I’m not sure if my answers were saved.



    Six of us here in Palmerston, Otago with established Swan plants have had no butterflies lay eggs this year!? We have had brilliant weather down here too.
    Last year at this time I had about 200+ caterpillars and had 100% hatch rate, all the butterflies flew away.
    We can’t understand it. In all the years I have had Monarchs lay eggs, this year is the worst by far.



    Miranda, Kiwilasss – please tell us what part of NZ you are in.

    I’m in Blockhouse Bay and yes, many of the eggs I’ve collected have been infertile. 🙁

    Have you completed the survey? It would be great if you could (if you haven’t already).



    I have found the same thing Miranda.
    I had a number of eggs sent up from Christchurch. Those that did well and hatched en route survived and have gone on to become butterflies but not many of the other eggs did anything.
    I am actively egg hunting whenever I see a female near my plants and have beaten the ants and ladybirds to quite a few but they certainly are not all hatching like they have in previous years.



    I’m not sure it’s just low numbers of eggs being laid. Several weeks ago I noticed how few caterpillars and eggs there were (in Auckland) so I collected the few I found and brought them inside. The hatch rate was less than 50% while in previous years it was pretty close to 100%. Has anyone else noticed this?



    I’ve done the survey … my response a bit misleading cos I was frantically de egging for about three weeks in February early march. If not I would have a lot of pupae at the moment. So I can say I would have removed probably 100 eggs. Plenty of eggs and small caterpillars out there now. Interesting they have stopped laying in Auckland …



    Here’s the survey – I guess i’m going to pay the $$$ as so many people and organisations too have shared it. GRR.

    If you haven’t already posted, please add to the survey.



    rob cooper

    eggs in nelson this year jaqui have been real good still got heaps



    It seems to be typical in Auckland, Trez_a. Monarchs stopped laying (or there weren’t any females laying from the middle of February). People responded toa message I posted in FB a week or so ago.

    Today I created a survey in FB hoping to hear from people. Then I got a message from the app with which I started the survey saying I’d had 40 replies and to get any more results, I needed to pay $US96 and upgrade from the free edition. ARGH!!!

    I’ll leave it for now as I’m a bit busy and try running the survey some other way. SO annoying.

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