Sandra CA

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  • in reply to: Shocked at cannibalism #49216

    Sandra CA
    Participant

    DessertKiwi,

    FYI, the day after I posted this my daughter found the 4th cat in the same room as the container. He had slipped out while I was getting the milkweed I guess and I closed the top and he couldn’t get back in. But I did have a cat that viciously attacked and killed another cat. I saw the whole thing and was completely shocked they could be so violent. If I had known they were fighting till death I would have separated them early on. It wasn’t to protect food, they were just too close together, or at least one thought so. I’ve never seen it since even though I’ve had almost identical crowding. How can you tell what’s going on in your garden?

    in reply to: No way to hang up chrysalis #43168

    Sandra CA
    Participant

    Caroline’s idea is good assuming it has a cremaster. Does it? If so, I simply use common thread tied around the cremaster’s tip and then tied on a branch. This might be easier than gluing it. If it doesn’t have a crestor, then I’m flat out of ideas.

    Sandra

    in reply to: Malformed Monarchs Hatching #42117

    Sandra CA
    Participant

    I’m not an expert, but I’ve read many times that OE causes this type of symptom in butterflies. We had one whose back legs weren’t strong and it couldn’t fully open it’s wings either. I chalked it up to OE. We have quite a bit of that here. I’d disinfect their enclosure thoroughly with a 20% bleach solution.

    in reply to: Snail bait kill caterpillars? #42116

    Sandra CA
    Participant

    Thanks Norm,

    They don’t sell the poisonous one here in the States anymore. I haven’t seen any dead caterpillars so hopefully I’ve gotten in firm under the plants.
    Thank you for your advice

    in reply to: Chrysalises Exposed #42100

    Sandra CA
    Participant

    Caryl,
    I’m so curious how you raised so many! Do you hand raise any of them or did they all survive in the “wild”. What is it like on those weeks when they all eclose? I’ve never heard anything like this-I’m so thrilled.

    I have about 35 chrysalis; there’s only three more in the enclosure now and ready to go. I had to start releasing some 4th instars into my main milkweed plants because I didn’t want to wipe out every node left on my lot and then have no butterflies here at all.

    Having over 100 chrysali at one time seems impossible without a massive field of milkweed. I guess that’s what’s so intriguing to me.

    Love to hear the story,
    Sandra

    in reply to: Dead and dying caterpillars #41805

    Sandra CA
    Participant

    I can’t imagine how horrible it must feel to lose so many of the little guys. And I think your gut feeling about the new plants is spot on. The evidence is too obvious. I believe it takes a couple months for the toxin to leach out. Make sure you remove any eggs that may appear in the upcoming time.

    Sorry for your loss.

    in reply to: milkweed cuttings drooping #41797

    Sandra CA
    Participant

    How do you break up the bottom? Like crush it?

    in reply to: New at home raising #41440

    Sandra CA
    Participant

    Thanks Jacqui,

    I live in Santa Ana which is between Los Angeles and San Diego. We’re about 10 miles from the ocean. Many sites here emphasize sterility in dealing with habitats to avoid disease. Like wiping it down with bleach cloths and then rinsing. But my habitat is huge; probably 2′ X 3-1/2H’. I keep it in the back garden. I use vases and floral foam in containers to keep the milkweed as fresh as possible. The floral foam is great for long branches of milkweed to stand strong and the cats love the long stems. I put bark mulch over the top of the containers because I’m concerned about foreign things that may harm them. So there is rarely any (frass?) poo on the floor. But I still clean it out once a week. This being said, my thought is the mulch is keeping the poo away from the cats and that is what can be harmful for them. I think there are two different ways of raising. One is using a small container which must be cleaned regularly and then my method, where you re-create living outdoors. I read somewhere that the later is “the easy way”, lol. I had my last large cat move to the top of the habitat, so that will be the third going into chrysalis, if they make it. I’m so hoping they do after the last one died without getting through the process. Can you tell me more about raising cats from eggs? Or I think I’ll post this as a new topic.

    Thanks again for your welcome hello

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