14 June 2011

Atala Butterflies Emerge

Before our inside Atalas starting hatching the larvae outside started all emerging a week earlier. It was a heyday in the parking lot coonties for Atalas. I loved watching this once rare species thrive at Green Cay.

Each new adult emerged and then dried its wings before fluttering about. Atalas stay relatively close to the host plant and were easily seen in the noon day sun. We found scores of butterflies hiding in the shade as well.

If you want to start liking butterflies, this is a good one to fall in love with. The striking orange abdomen is offset with dark wings and blue glittery spots. I promise you, it was hard to walk away from the emergence event and go back to work.

Lucky for me, I knew that since the outside butterflies were emerging that our inside ones should start as well. They were exactly a week behind schedule but I'm sure that's due to the cold AC temperatures we keep.

If you want to see some Atalas then Green Cay may be your best spot. I've heard this year's crop seems to be slim due to our weather patterns over the winter months. Now I need to just go out there and find some Atala eggs and the cycle will be complete!

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