Wednesday, August 25, 2010

It's a Girl...I think.

Well, I didn't get to witness it, but one of the butterflies emerged yesterday (Tuesday, August 24)  I think it is a female, but I'm not certain. It flew off and landed in the grass, just long enough for me to get a couple of pictures, then off it went.  I'm still waiting for the other one to emerge.  Maybe I'll get to witness that one. 

We also found a chrysalis on the side of our garage.  I'll be watching that one too.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Black Swallowtail--well, almost

These are the pre and early pupa stages.  They are both now in the early pupa stages and have been for the last week.  Another week or two and they will emerge as Black Swallowtail butterflies. 

I've been told that they like to emerge in the bright part of the day, usually morning.  Unfortunately, this is when I'm at work, but my source has told me that if I move my container to the basement or other dark room, I can prolong the emerging. I should be able to time it for when I'm home to watch them come out.  :-)  He has also told me that they take quite some time before they can actually fly, so I will be able to move them outside for photographs before they fly away.  HOW EXCITING IS THAT!!!  I will definitely keep you posted.  We'll see if I can do this right. I should have collected more than the two caterpillars.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Humming Birds

The humming birds are back.  This is a young male, you can see a couple of red spots on his throat. He was curious about the clicking noise coming from the camera. 

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Caterpillars, lots of them

They go through several stages, eating constantly and shedding as they get larger. I'm not sure what stage these are at or how many they go through.
This one just shedded.
I counted 12 on this dill plant.
If I've identified the caterpillars correctly, they will turn into Black Swallowtails like this one.

The caterpillars really like the dill and rosemary we planted this year.   I don't know where the larger ones go to turn into the chrysalises.  I put a couple in a jar and will watch to see if they will complete the metamorphosis.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

New backyard visitors this year.

I've had several new visitors to my backyard this year.  The humming bird moth has been by several times.  I'm not sure what kind of butterfly in the picture.  Some kind of Fritillary.  Even with my trusty butterfly book, it's hard to tell what kind they are.  And a colorful grasshopper and dragonfly.