Monarch caterpillars dying

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  • #58215


    I have a stand of swan plants about 2.4 metres tall. At the start of the warm weather in November there were numerous monarch butterflies laying eggs but the caterpillars began dying onite. The caterpillars look healthy but all died onite. This happened 3 times. There is no way it is spray poisoning or wasp attack as each dead caterpillar was still totally intact and full bodied not sucked dry. They all died, no matter what size, in the pre pupa stage ie hanging in a hook shape. The swan plants look woody rather than leafy

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  • #58289


    I have been surprised to see a couple of big caterpillars stop moving around or feeding just at the stage when I’d expect them to be at their most voracious. I get the impression that some have made it to the butterfly stage, though, judging by the fact that there are usually one or two butterflies hanging around and laying eggs.



    I have been having the same issue. About 20% have just randomly died for no reason at all and my plants are not sprayed at all, healthy and don’t have any wasp issues. I also work at a garden centre and some customers have said the same thing..



    Could it be dehydration?



    That is very strange. I can’t imagine what might have happened there. Please keep us posted

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