Simple tactic against paperwasps – seems to be working thus far

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  • #13854

    happyjohnny
    Participant

    I thought I’d share with you all a tactic that I am trying to combat the asian paper wasps with… it seems to be working thus far in the early season.

    I have simply grown broccoli plants along-side my swan plants and have encouraged the white-cabbage-moth larvae to populate them.

    (veggie gardeners please don’t hate me!!!)

    So far it seems that the asian papers wasps have been going for the white butterfly larvae and have been leaving my monarch caterpillars alone – so much so that I now have too many monarch caterpillars :D

    I recommend giving it a try; simply plant broccoli plants near your swan plants and let the white butterflies go nuts.

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  • #26544

    Terry
    Participant

    I would rather eat the Broccoli myself than let the Small whites eat it. I happen to like Broccoli, very tasty!
    Norms idea is the correct one! Although I don’t like doing it, I used to crush excess Monarch eggs to prevent my stock from outstripping the food supply and with other species where foodplant availability was limited.
    It’s a pity you can’t eat Paper wasps, that would help keep them under control! In the past in the UK, freshwater fishermen (Anglers) would dig up wasp nests and soak them in water to kill them, then use the wasp grubs from the nests as bait, many fish love eating them.

    #26539

    NormTwigge
    Participant

    The parasitic wasp is predominantly a white butterfly parasite, and while it does infect admirals, and monarchs to a minor degree, I think the increased build up of admirals would be moderate compared to the enormous population explosions of white butterfly. Also the more admirals that are propagated must equate to more reaching adult status, which can only be beneficial. Mother nature can be cruel, but everything is in balance.
    And if people can give mother nature a hand by protecting the caterpillars and butterflies from the predators,so much the better. So covering nettles harbouring caterpillars with a fine muslin is a good idea, not only to protect the caterpillars from predators, but also to prevent excessive eggs being deposited by the butterflies which will see some caterpillars starve when the plants are stripped bare.

    #26540

    NormTwigge
    Participant

    The parasitic wasp is predominantly a white butterfly parasite, and while it does infect admirals, and monarchs to a minor degree, I think the increased build up of admirals would be moderate compared to the enormous population explosions of white butterfly. Also the more admirals that are propagated must equate to more reaching adult status, which can only be beneficial. Mother nature can be cruel, but everything is in balance.
    And if people can give mother nature a hand by protecting the caterpillars and butterflies from the predators,so much the better. So covering nettles harbouring caterpillars with a fine muslin is a good idea, not only to protect the caterpillars from predators, but also to prevent excessive eggs being deposited by the butterflies which will see some caterpillars starve when the plants are stripped bare.

    #26538

    Jacqui
    Moderator

    Norm – do you think that if we encourage people to plant stinging nettle, then we will provide more food (e.g. Admirals) for wasps, and thus build up the population(s) of the various wasps?

    #26537

    NormTwigge
    Participant

    With the increase in the white cabbage butterfly follows the build up of the pupal parasitic wasp Pteromalus puparum, after all, that is why they were introduced into N.Z., as a biological control to help eradicate the white butterfly, and whenever there is a population explosion of the white butterfly there is an increase in the wasp population. The wasp is not too fussy on which variety it attacks, and will infect the admirals and also the monarchs. However the practice of containing pupating caterpillars in a castle or suitable enclosure will prevent them from gaining access to the pupating caterpillars.
    Failing to do this will put your caterpillars preparing to pupate ( form a chrysalis) at risk. With 100 plus wasps emerging from an infected pupa, the chance of further infection is multiplied immensely.

    #26536

    clinton9
    Participant

    I do not agree about happyjohnny’s idea as she is helping the numbers of paper wasps to increase.
    I’m hard-hearted toward paper wasps and I destroys the nests.

    I hates to see our wonderful native butterflies & exotic butterflies being ruined by paper wasps through killing the caterpillars. Butterflies need respect & help from us people.

    Clinton.

    #26533

    colleen20
    Participant

    Now why didn’t I think of that !!! I watched wasps carving up green caterpillers on the cabbages last year and did feel sorry for them BUT monarchs are more important, aren’t they ?

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