The Caterpillar Thread =3 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 25 Old 06-11-2012, 02:25 PM Thread Starter
The Caterpillar Thread =3

I had my first cecropia moth caterpillars start hatching last night =D. The last adult moth died a few days ago. So now the cycle begins anew! I've already raised over a dozen monarchs this spring. I also plan to try a new species, the luna moth, this year.

Here is the first cecropia moth from earlier this spring.
Baby cecropia caterpillars hatching <3 <3







The first batch of monarchs from about a week ago. They are currently chrysalises and should be butterflies in a few days =3.

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post #2 of 25 Old 06-11-2012, 02:45 PM
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That moth is sick!! awesome! I dunno if I'd touch it though ahhaa.

That is crazy those little eggs look like beans. Cute little guys.

I love the monarch caterpillars, so colorful. I wanna see pics of those when they morph!
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post #3 of 25 Old 06-11-2012, 03:14 PM
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So beautiful but um.... BIG. I'd seriously freak out if one landed on me but I guess if you raise them yourself, it's different.

What do you do with them after they all grow?

Animal testing is a terrible idea; they get all nervous and give the wrong answers.
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post #4 of 25 Old 06-11-2012, 05:57 PM
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Wow!
Where do you get your moths/butterflies?
I absolutely love butterflies. and there are some moths out there that look better than butterflies!

My parents went to Aruba, and theres this butterfly sanctuary they went to. Apparently there are these lizzards, all over the island, and they eat the butterflies, but not the wings. So, all over the sanctuary, there are bright, colorful wings all over the ground! A lady was cleaning up the wings, andmy mom asked if she could have them...and the lady gave em to her! She took em home to Rhode Island, and we laminated them...They are so beautiful!

We always have monarchs that lay eggs in our backyard..we have milk weeds all over to encourage them to come see us!

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RIP Lilly May, our 13 y/o beagle, taken from us 6.8.12

Main tank:50 gal/betta/Guppies/Cories/BNandRNPleco
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post #5 of 25 Old 06-12-2012, 03:51 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by LyzzaRyzz View Post
Wow!
Where do you get your moths/butterflies?
I absolutely love butterflies. and there are some moths out there that look better than butterflies!

My parents went to Aruba, and theres this butterfly sanctuary they went to. Apparently there are these lizzards, all over the island, and they eat the butterflies, but not the wings. So, all over the sanctuary, there are bright, colorful wings all over the ground! A lady was cleaning up the wings, andmy mom asked if she could have them...and the lady gave em to her! She took em home to Rhode Island, and we laminated them...They are so beautiful!

We always have monarchs that lay eggs in our backyard..we have milk weeds all over to encourage them to come see us!
The Silk moths come from here. Everything there is harmless except the Io Moth which has true stinging caterpillar. The monarch eggs I collect from outside as they are easy to find and have a pretty sad survival rate out there anyway. Raising the moths is a bit harder then monarchs. Especially when they first hatch they need humidity not too low or too high. You always have a pretty good die off at the beginning for various reasons. A significant percent for example will refuse to take to the offered host plant.

I personally like the caterpillars more then the adult moths. The adult moths are very pretty but they lack the amusing weirdness of the caterpillars. The cecropia cats will make the monarch cats look very drab in a few weeks

Some people love handling the moths others won't be in the same room with them if their cage is open lol. The adult moths end up various places. The ones I keep I tend to give away to my university if they are decent shape when they die. Some get set free others I give live to school teachers and so on depending how many I have. Same with the caterpillars, I give out some eggs, but I prefer raising the caterpillars till they are a few weeks old as their chances are much much better that way. They are very low maintenance for the most part. I keep mine in plastic containers/bins. They start out in little ziplock containers and move up to a 10 gallon storage bin. Towards the end of the caterpillar stage the cecropias do require large amounts of food and produce an equally large amount of waste. Its best to replace their food and washout the bin every other day at that stage. Typical caterpillar keeper is seen often on walks mauling trees
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post #6 of 25 Old 06-12-2012, 05:08 AM
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first off i want to thank you for sharing the pictures,i adore moths and butterflies.
I would gladly sit in amongst them all day if i could,i don't know what it is
about them but i find them almost mystical,and hypnotising
thanks again,and please keep up the pictures.

when you set up a new tank,hide an extra
sponge or two behind some decor,that way you have
something seeded for you next filter.
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post #7 of 25 Old 06-18-2012, 02:02 AM Thread Starter
The cecropias are starting to reach the 2nd instar(first shedding). No more boring black ^_^. I did a rough count last time I cleaned the containers out and there are about 200 of them. I had very little die off so far compared to normal. I ordered some more cecropia eggs too add some new genes into the ones I keep. Those should hatch in a few days. I also got some macro lenses for my camera.






The luna moth eggs I ordered also started hatching this morning. Spent half the day hoping they would take to wild cherry which is what the cecropias eat but didn't seem to be working so I am trying walnut now which they are taking to slowly.

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post #8 of 25 Old 06-18-2012, 03:11 AM
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wow i hope they take to it,otherwise what will you do ?

when you set up a new tank,hide an extra
sponge or two behind some decor,that way you have
something seeded for you next filter.
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post #9 of 25 Old 06-18-2012, 09:10 AM
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These guys grow FAST!
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post #10 of 25 Old 06-21-2012, 12:11 PM
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I saw this amazing looking moth last night, and was reminded of this thread. I know it's not a caterpillar, but it was at one point. : )





I know next to nothing about moths, so trying to identify this little guy has been difficult. Do you have any idea?
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