turning black, soft, rotten

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  • #13557

    11111
    Participant

    The weather in the Wairarapa is a lot cooler at nights, so far out of 8 the last 7 turn black, show no signs of wings, all soft & rotten, have another 15 to go, will this happen to all of them?

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  • #20164

    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Thanks Norm & Robert. Netted Nettles it is. I bought one of those greenhouse things from The Warehouse today, big enough to go over both Urtica ferox plants, and will cover it with netting. That way the Admirals can stay outside, and I will put my Monarch pupae inside. It will be big enough that I can put artificial food out for the butterflies once they emerge. I’ll just have to wear the rose-pruning gauntlets or I’ll get zapped again!

    #20160

    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Hi Kate,

    I agree with Clair & Norm.

    Monarch’s should emerge before winter, as only the adults can survive under 5C (approx).

    Admirals are native, so small caterpillars will probably do the first half of winter & then pupate (from what Vicky has stated before). Large Caterpillars will pupate soon & over-winter as adults.

    Terry’s post the other day (on the ferox seeds needed page) was the first I have heard of the Reds over-wintering in any other form apart from Adults. I’m sure Norm could comment on that better.

    Just remember that Admirals have higher predation then Monarchs, so Netted Nettles are the way to go.

    Robert.

    #20159

    NormTwigge
    Participant

    Hi Kate, unlike the monarchs, the admirals will overwinter as caterpillars as well as adults. Their metabolism slows down, although depending on size you may find some of the larger caterpillars could pupate and the resulting butterfly will overwinter. No harm in covering the plants over at night, but bringing the caterpillars inside will promote the development to adult butterfly in artificial warmer temperatures, which could be a disadvantage to the butterfly when released into wintery conditions.
    Norm.

    #20156

    Anonymous
    Inactive

    OK I’ll bring all the Monarchs in, but can Norm or Terry advise about the Admirals. I would prefer not to try to take them off the plants (the dreaded Urtica ferox!) unless I really need to. We do get quite heavy frosts here sometimes (I’m in a valley). But I understood that this area (Waikato) was part of the Admirals’ normal range. Would it be OK to cover the plants with frost cloth every night?
    Kate

    #20155

    Clair
    Participant

    Hi Kate, yes they will emerge over winter – just slower than summer ones. I have always brought my chrysalides inside, regardless of the time of year – and I have 4 cats – 2 beautiful, lazy males and 2 beautiful, lethal females!

    So, I keep everything under nets. A net picnic cover/old curtain/anything like that would do the job. What I did was get one of those 3 tier mini green house things from the warehouse (often on special at this time of year), take off the plastic cover and the middle tray, put the potted plants in it and cover it with mosquito netting (bought really cheap from Spotlight).

    So far, I’ve only raised monarchs, but you may need to do the same for admirals – others here who know about them, please come in!

    Interestingly enough, I have found that my 4-footed cats now seem to respect my wishes for the butterflies to be left alone, and they no longer bother about them as much as they originally did. I’ve recently had the odd escaped butterfly that has been completely ignored by the cats.

    And, on 2 occasions earlier this year I have come home from work to find a butterfly on the floor that just had to be a wild one – I know it had it to be wild because I had marked all my raised ones. The only explaination for their appearance was taht the cats must have brought them in unharmed – in both cases i kept them for a couple of days, feeding them up, and off they went! amazing!
    CC

    #20154

    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I didn’t realise frost was a problem for chrysalides. If I bring them inside, will they emerge over winter? Or will they stay dormant as pupae until springtime? Does this go for my Admiral pupae too? gulp. If that’s so, I will need some kind of enclosure inside or the cats will get them as they emerge. Any ideas? Can I just put a net picnic cover over them?

    #20148

    Clair
    Participant

    Hi Sandy, I take it you mean your chrysalides are dying in the cold? Yes they will. I’m in Wellington, and at the moment, the days are wonderful but the nights are bitter.

    You need to bring the remaining ones inside pronto if you want them to survive – if you need any help/advice about how to do this, there is heaps of advice on this website. However, if you need info in too much of a hurry to troll through it all in time, do not panic – post again for help tonight and you will get it! Just go pick the leaves they are hanging on, or very gently detach them from “whatever”, making sure you keep the cremaster(little black stick) and as much of the white silky attachment to “whatever” as you can. Keep them on someting really soft, like a cotton wool pad, until you can rehang them.

    Good luck

    CC

    CC

    #20147

    Swansong
    Participant

    Hi Sandy, have you had any frosts yet in the Wairapa. If you got a frost like us (Mananwatu) last night (and I bet you did) they (the chrysalis’) will not survivie a frost in my experience. : ( Theyre dodgy even at 5deg.

    It was our 1st frost and I unofficially read it at -2.

    Bit early eh??? I’ll be going out any minute now and covering up my swannies. Looks like a ditto for tonight.

    Swansong

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