We had one of four cocoons hatch out. It was a female. She attracted Males from all over. Some of them died after their long flight as you can see in the photos. The Males will fly up to 7 miles in order to mate with a female whose pheromones are put off from about 10 pm to 4 am. They smell her and they come. We had about 5 come and 3 were found dead around our butterfly net. Two males lived and we placed one in the net to mate with her. She laid eggs and lots of baby caterpillars hatched out about 3 weeks later. See caterpillars below.
July 26- August 4
10 Black swallowtail caterpillars collected, fed dill weed. They like the tender yellow flowers the best. They spit yellow when disturbed. about 1 1/2 cm when found. About 1 1/2 -2 inches when changing into chrysalis. They change colors as they grow larger. One egg hatched out in our tank and so we got to observe the color change from complete black to striped green, black, with yellow spots.
Chrysalis colors range from light green with yellow spots to splotchy brown. We are wondering if these are variations of the type of butterfly, difference between genders, or just camouflage as they mostly match their stick that they are hanging on. But not consistently enough for us to tell for sure.
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FAMILY NATURE STUDY