Tuesday, September 9, 2014

New Butterfly House for Zebra Longwings & Gulf Fritillarys 9.6.14

When we saw the Zebra Longwing laying eggs on the Passion Flower Vine…028csJim decided he’d build me a Butterfly House for them and the Gulf Fritillarys. They both use the Passion Flower Vine as a larval plant.

The Zebra Longwings lay their yellow eggs on the tips of the new growth. The Gulf Fritillarys lay on the leaf.

We used lumber that we already had so they did not come out alike, but the Passion Vines don’t need as tall a house. I have a Giant Milkweed that is put in the Monarch/Queen house when I have a lot of caterpillars…even then some of the stalks have to be bent over.


We have wild Passion Vine down the road …I cut some and put it in a vase and moved the vase with the cuttings from Debbie’s plant into their new home.

The plant on the L is much coarser than the one from Debbie…but both are accepted by the caterpillars.


While we were building the house I had a Queen and a Gulf Fritillary they were almost ready to emerge so I set the camera up while we were outside. I just missed the Queen emerge but caught the Gulf Fritillary and also a Queen caterpillar pupating at the same time.



This little one has just shed it’s skin…you can see it behind him, and his spikes are still light. They’ll be black in a few hours.


Not a good picture of the Zebra Longwing but you can see both are interested in the Passion Flower Vine.


Here is a flower in the Butterfly House that is just starting to open. They are about 3” across when in full bloom. Beautiful flowers.


We can sit in the screen room and watch the Honey Bees, the caterpillars grow and Hummingbirds feed on the Jatropha Bush and the Bottle Brush. Every now and then a Raccoon will check us out. We keep hoping the Bob Cat will stop by but haven’t seen it in the back yard yet.

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