Caterpillar explosion

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  • #14587

    Can any body give us some suggestions as we have had a population explosion of caterpillars. We came back from holiday with this happening. We have run through 12 big swan plants and currently have 50-60 big caterpillars about to go hungry. Someone suggested putting them in an empty shoe box with holes in the sides and that will cause them to head for the lid and chrysalise. Is this good advice? Can some one else help us with any further advice. The nurseries are short on decent size plants at the moment!

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  • #25968

    Darren
    Participant

    Our FAQ lists cucumber, pumpkin and courgette as alternatives? but only when they are ten days old or more than 2cm in length.

    What food plants can I feed a Monarch butterfly in NZ? What do Monarch caterpillars eat?

    #25965

    Charlotte
    Participant

    Hi Craig

    Can you let us know where you are based and this may help us better.

    Thanks
    Charlotte

    #25963

    Bernie
    Participant

    This time last year,in desperation,I peeled little slivers of the stem so that they were not completly separated and resembled leaves.I used a potato peeler to do this.It worked but the caterpillars made short work of the peeled pieces!

    #25960

    Terry
    Participant

    You could crush up some of the stems from your stripped swan plants and drip the sap on to the Pumpkin, this will give the larvae the right chemicals with the pumkin and could help get some through to pupation.

    #25959

    Bernie
    Participant

    Hi Craig
    The article that Terry recommended is spot on in my experience.
    They eat pumpkin but do not thrive.
    They will lay on and eat Tweedia.they do not lay on araujia but I have succesfully reared them from egg to adult on it.I know it is classed as a bad weed in your country but it is sold here in GB in some seed catalogues and I have several growing in my garden and one in a pot in my greenhouse.It has proved a real lifesaver for me and I even used it to feed the white variety of monarch a couple of years ago.

    #25957

    Terry
    Participant

    Hi Craig

    Try this!

    Alternative food for monarch larvae

    http://www.landcareresearch.co.nz/news/release.asp?Ne_ID=48

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