How do yellow aphids affect monarch caterpillars

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  • #53003


    Since my Swan plants have developed an infestation of yellow aphids over last 2 months many caterpillars have died and chrysalis’s have not hatched. Why would that be? How can I kill the aphids without harming the caterpillars?

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  • #53009

    Blake in Porirua

    Agreed as above. its not the aphids affecting the monarch. they affect the plant.

    To share my experience:
    4 plants I have on only one side of my property were infected with aphids this season. 3 last year. the other side of the house has 28 plants and none got aphids….?!
    I took any caterpillars off infected plant and put on another plant for 36 odd hours. perhaps if you have just one plant you could put caterpillars in container with leaves with no aphids. I treat the plant with an incredibly weak detergent water mix in a sipper drink bottle. I slowly squirt the bubble solution on and I very gently but thoroughly ‘massage’ it around the leaves and steams as i go. top to bottom is logical. I leave it on for 15 mins then wash it off by again massaging plain water. Its essential to rinse the leaves thoroughly. Dont worry too much about any aphids left as they will be on their way out!
    Not once has this method failed me in deforming any creatures or plants. (150-180 butterflies over two years)

    I welcome any feedback as to thoughts on my method.



    Hi Valmae

    The aphids will not directly harm your monarch caterpillars but will affect the swan plants badly. Feed your plants and ensure that they do not get too dry – probably unlikely at this time of the year. If they are healthy, you will usually get healthy caterpillars.

    Click on the “aphids” hot tag to the right of here and read up all that has been posted previously about aphids – and also ladybirds and A. colemanii. These latter two are your friends! And whatever you do, do your research before you use any chemical control.



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