how long can the actual mating take…..?

This topic contains 14 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Jacqui 1 year, 1 month ago.

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  • #13397

    zoe9
    Participant

    One of my newly hatched girls has already been mated with. She only hatched this morning though and hasn’t even had a chance to try her wings out yet.

    Thing is, it’s been going on for ages. Hours. They’re still sitting out there on the lavender bushed joined together. I suppose I should be relieved he didn’t fly off with her, but is it ever going to end…?

Viewing 14 replies - 1 through 14 (of 14 total)
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  • #53561

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    That’s amazing, blupaisan!

    #53559

    blupaisan
    Participant

    Hi, I am chiming in from the Eastern United States and found this thread online whilst trying to find info on mating monarchs. I have been stalking a pair for a week. I have filmed them flying in tandem. They have been stuck together all this time. Finally yesterday I discover them in the grass. Only one is alive. The second one died overnight. It blows my mind that they were attached for at least a week (that is how long i have been visiting this particular field.) I have numerous still photos and video of this occurence. So now i know the mating can go on for an awfully long time!!———————————————

    #19345

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    Referring to post three, near the top, Chip Taylor (Kansas University) replied:

    Briefly, seeing a mating pair doesn’t tell you much. Seeing lots of them might.

    Staying in diapause is a function of temps – if too high, some males will mate with diapausing females. If these females also break diapause, then some egg laying might occur. But, quite often the females stay in diapause even though mated – and, of course, there is no egg laying.

    Matings are sometimes seen in overnight clusters during the migration. Most such observations occur toward the south where the temps are higher. I don’t ever think I’ve seen one here in KS (Kansas state).

    It would be good to know the condition of the male. If worn, then the male might be a carry-over from the end of the reproductive season – and he is still mating. Once reproductive, individuals do not subsequently enter diapause.

    #19307

    VickySteele
    Participant

    Monarchs can mate for as less as 1 hour and as long as 17 hours. It would be interesting to know what the average is though.

    #19306

    Helen
    Participant

    Hi Zoe, You have started a really interesting subject on the mateing of the Monarchs.
    I have seen heeps of them mating,but I have never bothered to take the time to see how long
    they stay attached.I will make a point of doing just that next time I see them.
    Thanks for that.Helen.

    #19304

    zoe9
    Participant

    Hi Margie and in my opinion she was attached waaaaay too long. The poor thing looked bored silly !

    After I made this post I actually moved them from the lavender bush into one of my netted enclosures that’s been sitting on my front lawn for a while. (I’ve been using it to house my invalid butterflies during the day – it’s nice because it’s out in the sun and gives them room to move plus the lawn hasn’t been mowed for a bit and there are clovers and other little flowers growing.)

    Anyway I moved them into it because I was curious to see how long they would stay joined for, plus I didn’t want him to fly off with her.

    When I got up this morning though they’d already separated (and, I might just add, were sitting at opposite ends of the enclosure!) I let them both out and she didn’t waste any time getting away. She flew straight up over my house and out of sight.

    So to answer your question I don’t know how long they were attached for in the end but it was at least 9 hours.

    Definitely good to know it can take such a long time though because I have wondered about it before.

    Thanks for asking about her πŸ™‚

    Cheers,
    Zoe

    #19303

    margie
    Participant

    Hi Zoe,
    How is it going with your butterfly that was mating is she free now and how long was she attached to him for? πŸ™‚
    Cheers Margie

    #19288

    Swansong
    Participant

    Thats why I like to keep mine indoors until they have dry wings and are all roaring and ready to go. When its even slightly cooler like today 22Deg here, and a wee nippy SE, they can take more than a day to decide to get all fiesty. Anywayz, this is easy for me coz they are all brought inside from the big fat pillar stage. However this season, Im quite a wayz off getting any butterflies. Ive only just got 2 day old pillars!

    2 or so days ago I saw a pair “parked up” on my Jasmine for about 4 hours. Didnt see them fly off, and so I dont know what happened after that.

    Swansong

    #19287

    Charlotte
    Participant

    Hi Zoe and Jacqui,

    Oh my 18 hrs.. Glad I’m not a butterfly and I certainly dont think I wanna come back as a female butterfly anyway. LMAO..

    I always wondered how long they mated. There is always mating going on in our garden. We usually see it 2 times a week..
    Saw one on Sunday morning and then again Monday morning.. Must be a WESTIE thing..heheheehehe.

    I know one of my new girls that hatched got caught by an older male.. I felt like you Zoe.. I thought gosh poor girl she has only just been released!!.

    Cheers
    Charlotte.

    #19286

    zoe9
    Participant

    Ha, no, you didn’t upset me Jacqui. You made me laugh and my reply was intended to be light-hearted too (although just quietly between the two of us I do feel a bit bad for her.)

    Eighteen hours though. Blimey. I had NO idea it was quite that long but good to know cause now I can stop stressing about it. Hopefully they’ll stay put for tonight and she can take her maiden flight tomorrow once she’s free of her ‘excess baggage’!

    Cheers,
    Zoe

    PS Glad I was able to provide you with some homework – best you get on with it then ! πŸ™‚

    #19285

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    No, Zoe, that’s the way nature is, Monarchs can mate for up to eighteen hours.

    It’s absolutely natural.

    Our problem often is that we (people) often inflict our own “judgements” on to insects and wild animals. For instance, when there’s a storm, insects do what comes naturally… they don’t go out in it. Sure, some will die, but storms are absolutely “natural”.

    Not every animal is meant to reach maturity – where you have “live stock” you will also have “dead stock”.

    I’m sorry if I upset you, didn’t mean to. But you prompted me to think of something quite interesting question, and I thank you for that. I’m doing some homework on it!

    J.

    #19283

    zoe9
    Participant

    Humpff. Jacqui I don’t feel you are taking my concerns seriously. I actually feel sorry for her now and find myself scowling at him when I check to see what they’re doing (still sitting there joined together by the way – I fear they will have to be surgically separated at this rate!)

    #19282

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    Actually, on hindsight, that’s interesting Zoe. We should (perhaps) start noting when we see Monarchs coupled, because that is a good indication they haven’t gone into diapause yet.

    To those who say “dia WHAT”, it’s when the Monarch late summer generation are sexually mature but don’t mate until the spring.

    It would be quite good to make an entry of where and when we see any Monarchs mating. I shall start an additional thread, and hope that others will contribute to it if you see Monarchs mating. I guess we might be able to assume from this that you’ve got at least another generation of Monarchs in your part of the world.

    Jacqui

    #19281

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    “Is it ever going to end…?”

    Yep.

    Zoe, leave them alone, maybe they’re SCARED to separate, knowing you’re watching them. ROFL.

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