Baby cats not eating

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  • #53576


    Hi Everyone – I’m new here so please forgive me if I’m posting in the wrong spot or ask silly questions. I’m also new to helping the monarchs in my garden by taking in their eggs before the wasps and ants get them.

    I brought in 6 newly laid eggs a week ago, followed all directions I’ve found online (in a clean nursery, paper towel lined, leaf segment with egg, mist of water to keep leaf fresh). All six hatched same morning and I promptly put in fresh, rinsed milkweed leaves for each, just placing the segment they were on to the new leaf. All crawled on and began to feed and everything was great for the first few hours.
    Then two stopped eating. Then a third. Then a fourth. And they stopped moving too.
    The last two kept eating all day and got bigger and are healthy looking.
    Day 2, I cleaned all the nurseries, and supplied fresh cleaned leaves – placing the old leaf on top for them to crawl over. I had to encourage all of them, but they all got on to their new leaves. The four are still not eating, not moving and still so tiny … but they are alive. They move if I poke them softly in the rear. And the healthy 2 have also stopped eating and moving.

    What have I done wrong?

    The wasps are devouring all newly hatched cats outside so I took in 5 more eggs yesterday, but I’m terrified that after they hatch, they too will become ill because of me. I am torn at this point, do I leave them outside to be attacked by wasps within an hour of hatching, or bring them in to die slowly by my inexperienced hand???

    I feel so horribly thay I may be hurting them. Can anyone offer me some advise or tell me what is wrong? Is it too cold in my house? I have it at 73 degrees, but the mudroom where I keep them is about 68. Should I move them to a warmer room?

    Thank you

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  • Author
  • #53577


    Hello Ren

    It could be several things and it’s hard to say. Often we learn more about raising monarch caterpillars by making mistakes, I’m afraid. 🙁 That’s not very helpful is it?

    Are the leaves you are feeding them off the same plant where you found the eggs? Is there any possibility that the plant was sprayed with pesticide?

    Apart from that I can’t really make any suggestions. This forum is pretty quiet at present as it’s not monarch season here in New Zealand (yet). It’s midwinter… or late winter. If you use Facebook, then you’ll find “The Beautiful Monarch” a great place to seek advice. There may even be someone in your neighbourhood who could give you advice.


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