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Old 08-20-2010, 12:06 AM   #41
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Oh yaaaa!!! Native parsley rocks. I've got Prairie Parsley (Polytaenia nuttallii). Don't forget there's a native dill out there too and it's a nice looking plant, Perideridia americana.
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Old 08-20-2010, 12:06 AM   #42
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The native parsley that I have the most of is Daucosma laciniatum, which naturally grows in my area. They had a LOT of caterpillars on it this year. I've forgotten the exact name of the other one(I'm not getting any younger, BTW), but it is a Polytaenia species. There were only a few plants of that one this year. I've seen lots of insects nectaring on both native and nonnative parsleys.
ButterflyLinda, none of us are getting any younger, not even Sylvatica. ...But I know what you mean...I feel like my brain has been on the fritz lately.

I had no idea there were native parsley here! Thanks for the info.
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Old 08-20-2010, 12:47 AM   #43
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Yes, thanks B.Linda and Eq. I'll start looking these up for this area.
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Old 08-20-2010, 06:09 AM   #44
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Oh yaaaa!!! Native parsley rocks. I've got Prairie Parsley (Polytaenia nuttallii). Don't forget there's a native dill out there too and it's a nice looking plant, Perideridia americana.
Cool, I'll look it up too! Thanks.
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Old 08-22-2010, 05:18 PM   #45
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Here is a picture of the dilemma caterpillar that I took on Saturday. I looked for the other one that was I found on the same tree and cannot find him anywhere. The caterpillar almost doubled in size in 24 hours. As you can see in the picture it now has the familiar eyespots, they were not there the day before. I believe that this is the third instar. I never realized that the "head" is actually a hood that covers the actual head. I feel a bit better now that I have learned something that I did not know before. You can see its real head just beginning to poke out from under the "hood". It does seem to grow slowly, prefers to eat in solitude, or at least without an audience. I am used to seeing the monarch larva basically swallow an entire leaf so this is quite different. It has a tendency to wander out of the rearing container (not sure quite how it does that yet) to shed and then return to the leaf. I have also noticed that it will eat one leaf then return to a different leaf to hide. Since birds find caterpillars and such by looking for leaf damage, this is a very good defense mechanism. It is possible that the other caterpillar on the tree is just better at hiding that I am at finding.
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Old 09-13-2010, 05:13 PM   #46
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Just as an aside, I recently learned that Black Swallowtails, and any others that use parsley/dill/queen anne's lace as larval plants are not native to North America. They are believed to have been introduced, along with their host plants, when the first humans crossed the land bridge from Asia.

So they have been here a long, long time, but are not officially native. Should we plant larval plants for them?

And while I agree in principle with the playing no favorites in the food chains in my garden, removing a single caterpillar for the pleasure of raising it is unlikely to make a significant impact on the predators and will give a great deal of pleasure, so I say "go for it!"

It took me a while to find this thread/response! In preparation for my presentation in a couple of weeks, I remembered reading this and decided that I should check it out. I emailed Dr Tallamy this weekend and his response to me was that the eastern black swallowtail is in fact a NATIVE species. They prefer the parsley and such because we have made it more palatable for ourselves and thereby more palatable for the caterpillars.
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Old 09-14-2010, 01:43 AM   #47
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I'm lost.... What made you think it wasn't native tineckbone? It was definitely here before European colonization? BTW.... how's your little tiger swallowtail doing?
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Old 09-14-2010, 07:42 PM   #48
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The larger a monarch larva gets, the more toxic it becomes. One of the benefits of eating a toxic plant. It is entirely probable that they have gone off to pupate. Good luck in finding the chrysalides.
As far as your mantis goes, there are about 20 species that are native here in North America. That is not to say that yours is one of them, I am not able to identify it well enough to be sure...

~smile~

tineckbone (and everyone else),

Today, I happened to spot this which means my luck isn't too bad--at least I know that one of them (and likely both of them) did pupate and emerge. (First two pictures) Too bad I didn't notice this before when it was the green and gold gem, but I'm thrilled I stumbled upon it. As Mary (bridget1964) says: If you plant them, they will come! ~smile~ I hope to have a LOT more next year.

And, the other day, I found what MrIlovetheAnts tells me is a praying mantis egg sac!
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Old 09-14-2010, 07:44 PM   #49
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I am right that this is the remains of the monarch's chrysalis, correct?
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Old 09-15-2010, 03:52 AM   #50
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Yep, that would be the remains of a monarch chrysalis. Congratulations on your contribution to ensuring the stability of the migration and the species! I have a few of those around the yarden myself and Mary has a TON of them!
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