Posts by Prem63

    Hi Nils. Mid April is not unusual. The moth had been flying in southern England for about 2 weeks. I have seen them as late as early June also. The gregarious young caterpillars are easy on plum, blackthorn or hawthorn. Plum is best as there are no thorns. In the 4th and 5th instars they can be prone to disease. Keep the population density low in the wild they wander away from each other. I usually let most of mine go and keep a dozen or so for the following year. Best wishes Prem

    Hi Cheyenne. I note that you say you have lots. Are the non pupating caterpillars disturbing the pupating ones?

    Best wishes


    Hello. If there is a flow of air then this makes it easier for the male to track the pheromone from the female. I keep my moths outside in a cage the breeze at night works well. The humidity of the outdoor air also helps keeping the moths alive which is important if the eclosure of the male and female do not synchronise. Good luck. Prem

    Hello Uwe. I have had my dubernardii cocoons since November. I kept them cold in a frost free shed. They started to hatch about 2 weeks ago. They are outdoors and it is cool cloudy and rainy in England. Last summer and autumn they eclosed after 4 to 6 weeks and most hatched at the same time. Best wishes Prem

    hi Marcel. I think your description of caterpillars writhing around sounds like insecticides

    But where from is the problem. Leaves sprayed by farmers or gardeners or the District council

    Dog or cat flea repellent. Clothes moth killer.

    Wash everything. Perhaps find a new place to get foodplant

    I.hope things get better.

    Best wishes


    Hi Hector

    I would suggest that pairings are most likely if there is a slight breeze taking the pheromone from female to male. Outdoors would be best, but attacus atlas may need to be above 20 degrees at night. Next to an open window, indoors may be ok. Good luck. Prem

    Hello. I think it is Padus. We have avium and Padus and this looks like Padus. It is useful as foodplant for callosamia promethea and automeris io. Padus stays fresh much longer than avium. The flowers of Padus are different to avium. Best wishes Prem

    Hello Ethan, I was reading through the conversation about solutions for feeding butterflies. I have used sucrose or honey and water with a pinch of salt and it works with nymphalids. But flowers such as Verbena bonariensis, lantana and buddleja are better. the solutions that I made in the past were a little random, but I was just now googling the composition of nectar and there are a number of papers where the composition and concentration of the sugars, fructose, glucose and sucrose and other components such as amino acids have been measured. I have not looked in detail at this moment, but I guess it would be sensible to try to mimic the sugar concentrations of real nectar.

    Don't worry about a run of bad luck. It happens to all of us it is disappointing but keep trying.

    Good luck and best wishes


    `Hi, yes they look good. I usually remove the caterpillar frass (faeces) once or better twice a day. just lift the leaves and paper and caterpillars out of the box and throw the frass away. The pellet of feces on one caterpillar can be removed with a pair of tweezers. If the caterpillars are feeding on p.lauracues keep them on that. Best wishes Prem

    Hi. I think the caterpillars look OK. In the winter I have always used Rhododendron with good success. I have never tried Prunus lauraceus. In the summer Apple is good. Willow is good but wilts too quickly. Hawthorn is also good, but too spiny. Good luck Prem

    Hi , try looking at the Moths of India website which may be able to help. I will try have look also, but nocttuids are difficult anywhere in the world and Northeast india has a vast number of species. I will ask my brother. If you upload the photographs to the Moths of India, the team are steadily working away at identifying the photographs. Best wishes Prem

    Hello Jason, I have reared them on Pinus sylvestris in plastic boxes of increasing size. I kept the numbers per box low. Say, 10 first instar in 10cm x 5 cm x 5 cm to 10 full grown caterpillars in 50cmx 30x 30. I cleaned and aired twice a day. I did not spray the caterpillars at any stage. The pine stayed fresh for 3 or 4 days. I reared at 20 to 25 degrees. They were disease free. The cocoons in the Uk summer took 8 weeks to eclose which is quite long. They paired in netted cages 1x1x1m cages in a poly tunnel with doors open. I am trying to overwinter my cocoons by keeping cool at 5 to 10 degrees, I hope they will be ok. They have been very very much easier than Hyalophora which I have always found to be very prone to disease. Best wishes Prem

    Hello Bela, It is difficult to take a vacation with caterpillars. I agree with the others. Sleeve them on growing food plant is probably the best. Someone in the family could help would be better, but this is often not possible. I have put lots and lots of fresh food plant in the cage and kept them in a slightly cool back room, so that the plant stays fresh as long as possible and the caterpillars grow a little slowly. But everything is a little bit of a risk. Best wishes Prem

    Hello, looks very good, nice and neat. I keep my pupae in a shed, so that they get nice and cold. Make sure that the mice cannot eat them. Good luck and it looks like you will have plenty in the spring.

    Best wishes


    Hi I think the pupae will overwinter and emerge in May. This may be better, because it is getting late in north Europe. I have kept Luna for several years and if you have eggs in September it will be end October or early November before the caterpillars pupate. Food plant may be difficult at end October. For food plant I use walnut, it stays fresh. Betula becomes dry very quickly.
    The second brood pupae hatch quite quickly, within 2 to 4 weeks.
    Liquidamber is also very good.
    Good luck

    Hello Giacomo,
    I have always used oak, Quercus robur and they do well. I have tried others such as willow and aspen and apple, but they would not take it. Hornbeam, Carpinus and beech, Fagus may
    be worth trying. From L3 onwards they need space and do not like overcrowding