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Go Back   Orchid Board - Most Complete Orchid Forum on the web ! > OFF TOPIC > Off Topic - Totally
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  #1  
Unread 08-08-2012, 11:41 AM
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Default Black Swallowtail Butterfly

I've been growing black swallowtail butterfly from eggs to adults. I feed them with rue, dill, and parsley.
They take about a month to complete the growth cycle.

Very interesting to see them eat and poop so much and so fast!

It's amazing to see the butterfly come out of the chrysalis. I used to frame them, but now I just let them fly away.

One interesting thing is that once the caterpillars reach full size, they leave the feeding plant and roam around looking for a place to attach themselves and become chrysalis. I find chrysalis at odd places around the apartment. It's touch to find them sometimes but always fun!

Two of them chose my orchids for their sites.
First two photos show an adult coming out on a spike of green complex paph. The next set show a green chrysalis on a miltoniopsis.

The last picture is from one caterpillar in less than two hours. All they do is eat, rest, poop and grow.
Attached Thumbnails
Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3571.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3573.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3634.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3635.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3397.jpg  

Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3414.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3469.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3507.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3483.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3508.jpg  

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  #2  
Unread 08-08-2012, 11:56 AM
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Default some more pictures...

The first picture shows three eggs on the dill flowers. Can you find them all? hint,,,they are light yellow.

Once they hatch, they stay on there until they eat everything! One of the pictures show how they devoured the entire plant leaving only the stems.

A few pictures of the adults. The dark one with blue on the wings are females, while males have lots of yellow and hardly no blue spots.

Then some pictures of chrysalis I found at odd places like the bottom of bookshelf and even on electric cord by the bed. The one by the bed is almost black just like its environment. amazing what they can do!

Enjoy~
Attached Thumbnails
Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3373.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3470.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3442.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3446.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3447.jpg  

Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3491.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3425.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3528.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3626.jpg   Black Swallowtail Butterfly-dscn3435.jpg  

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Last edited by NYCorchidman; 08-08-2012 at 12:06 PM..
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  #3  
Unread 08-08-2012, 12:07 PM
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Beautiful! I enjoyed looking at all your pics. Thanks for posting!
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Unread 08-08-2012, 01:41 PM
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How cool is that?!!! You do this in your apartment? Dont the caterpillars eat your orchids too? Where do you get the eggs to start with or do you start with the butterflies? I would love to do something like this.....Jean
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Unread 08-08-2012, 01:48 PM
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Very nice! I did that last year, kids had a lot of fun letting the butterflies go...after flying around the house for a while, hehe
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Unread 08-08-2012, 01:58 PM
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Wow! They just roam around the house? I would be afraid to step on them. Very cool. These are gorgeous butterflies. And caterpillars are cute, too. I love the markings.
Thanks for sharing, I enjoyed the pictures.
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Unread 08-08-2012, 03:48 PM
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So beautiful to look at -- Thanks for posting the photo's
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Unread 08-08-2012, 06:09 PM
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Thanks for the pictures - beautiful and interesting!
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Unread 08-08-2012, 10:04 PM
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Default very cool!!

I love it!!...give me an idea to put butterflies in my garden too. I like bugs.... and things that seem to eat them also. I think the frogs and lizards wiped out my praying mantis's. Do you think they would eat the butterflies if they catch em? I got a small dragon sized Mediterranean house gecko under the door step. I caught a tree roach and gladly stomped him into submission. they are the really big huge outdoor roaches. tossed him down by the gekko diner and he grabbed that big bug and tossed it around like a rag, dragged it back under the step..Next day all I find is wings and legs..rest been devoured. I like to feed the lizards and frogs but it would hurt my feelings if they ate the beautiful butterflies and I might have to exorcise them from my garden..but thanks for the idea


I already found where I can buy them at

I got some grasshoppers but they got really big and we had to hunt them down.

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Last edited by RJSquirrel; 08-08-2012 at 10:17 PM..
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  #10  
Unread 08-08-2012, 11:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RJSquirrel View Post
I love it!!...give me an idea to put butterflies in my garden too. I like bugs.... and things that seem to eat them also. I think the frogs and lizards wiped out my praying mantis's. Do you think they would eat the butterflies if they catch em? I got a small dragon sized Mediterranean house gecko under the door step. I caught a tree roach and gladly stomped him into submission. they are the really big huge outdoor roaches. tossed him down by the gekko diner and he grabbed that big bug and tossed it around like a rag, dragged it back under the step..Next day all I find is wings and legs..rest been devoured. I like to feed the lizards and frogs but it would hurt my feelings if they ate the beautiful butterflies and I might have to exorcise them from my garden..but thanks for the idea


I already found where I can buy them at

I got some grasshoppers but they got really big and we had to hunt them down.

I remember seeing those big roaches on the wall by the garage of my friend's house in Houston. They were really big and had wings. I was freaking out! almost hehe

Well, different butterflies eat on different plants. If you'd like to attract Black Swallowtail butterflies for reproduction, plant lots of parsley, dills, and rue plants. They will come and lay eggs.
If you want to just see them, lilies, butterfly bush and many other flower choices will fit. Search on the net to find what plants fit your climate though.

and yes, frogs and lizards will eat butterflies too unfortunately.

By the way, I got a good laugh out of the picture, thanks!
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