Lep Foraging

Discussion on butterflies, moths and skippers
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jmoths
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Lep Foraging

Post by jmoths »

Hello all,
I am writing this post asking for help finding the immature stages of the below species of butterfly:

Gray Buckeye (J. coenia)
West Coast Lady (V. annabella)
Red Admiral (V. atalanta)
Pale Swallowtail (P. eurymedon)
Anise Swallowtail (P. zelicaon)
Orange Sulphur (C. eurytheme)

Does anyone have advice on where larvae or pupae could be found? The season they are found in? I am in the Pasadena area (Los Angeles). Thank you! :D
eurytides
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Re: Lep Foraging

Post by eurytides »

Pupae are well hidden and pure luck if you find them. Larvae are best found on their host plants. For example, P. zelicaon can be found on dill which grows wild in many places in California.
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kevinkk
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Re: Lep Foraging

Post by kevinkk »

Fennel also grows wild in northern Cali, I spent nearly 20 years in Humboldt and that stuff was everywhere, maybe dill grows wild as well,
I know here at home, I have seen Papilio zelicaon oviposit on my fennel plants, they're not very common here on the coast though.
Finding wild larva or pupa is pretty much pure luck, it's going to be location, location.. knowing your target food plant is important.
I can count the cocoons I've found in the wild on 1 hand, you're more likely to find larva. In the east, people seem to collect a lot of
wild material, but that's a 2000 mile drive from here.
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Re: Lep Foraging

Post by eurytides »

Sorry, I meant to say wild fennel, not dill.
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kevinkk
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Re: Lep Foraging

Post by kevinkk »

They both look the same... except I can't grow dill to save my life. The fennel, on the other hand is going to be doing battle with my flamethrower
one of these days. I bought 1 container at the nursery for about 10 bucks, nice bronze fennel that has a purplish color in spots. We have volunteer
fennel all over the neighborhood... gee whiz, I wonder where that came from, probably some of those starlings.
It takes 2 of us about 2 days to cut the fennel back after it reseeds itself like those Triffids. I do insist on inspecting each branch though, still
haven't found a zelicaon pupa, just tiny snails. We do smell nice afterwards.
eurytides
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Re: Lep Foraging

Post by eurytides »

A few years ago I visited San Francisco in December. Found some wild fennel and within a few minutes, I located an L5 zelicaon larva.
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kevinkk
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Re: Lep Foraging

Post by kevinkk »

they are easy to spot, the year I had them here at home, I found a dozen or so. It's been a year or more since I've seen one in the neighborhood,
but they just tend to fly though, so you need to be out at the right time.
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