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  • Re: Blue Jays and Hummingbirds
    • (Login beckygardener)
      Hummingbirder 2008
      Posted Jun 15, 2012 11:42 PM

      Maybe the bluejays are more squawk than chomp when chasing hummers?!!!

      This is off topic ...

      Tom - You would laugh ... I've rarely had our state butterfly (Zebra Longwings) come to my yard. Usually just one or two every now and again. Well, when I moved the portable garden from the school back to my house, along with it came the White blooming Passiflora vine.

      I've had a mating pair of ZLW in my yard for the past couple of weeks. Well, the female has been laying eggs all over the 3 passiflora vines in my backyard. Unfortunately, the wasps are finding the caterpillars before I do. When I moved the portable garden into the backyard, I put it next to the picket fence around my patio. That's a place the wasps don't usually check because there are rarely caterpillars on any plants in that area. Well, the ZLW female did indeed find the Passiflora vine growing in the portable garden and she laid eggs all over the vine. I pruned those ends (with the eggs) and put them in a little cage. I now have about 40-50 baby caterpillars that I am raising temporarily in that cage. They will all be transported back to the portable garden when they are a little bigger. I have the screen around the portable garden now which includes the passion vine to protect the caterpillars from predators. Interestingly, the caterpillars seem to stay in groups on the leaves. Not lone caterpillars like other species of butterflies. And to top it off, I've got almost as many caterpillars of the Eastern Black Swallowtail currently being raised in the portable garden as well. There are BST chrysalis all over the place inside that screened container garden. Both of these butterfly species have not frequented my yard in many, many years. And if it couldn't get any better than that, I've found a few of the Pipevine Swallowtail caterpillars for the very first time ever in my yard. I've had a spreading Pipevine growing all over my back fence area that has never attracted the Pipevine butterflies. But this year something has changed! This is going to be a very interesting year for butterflies in my yard! I may be breaking my average 200+ raised and released butterflies in a given year. Must be the warm winter and spring we've had.

      I bet YOU will have lots of butterflies and caterpillars this year, too!
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