Friday, October 26, 2012

Black Swallowtail Update

   Well, it looks like we're in it for the long haul, these chrysalises will be spending a long winter with us. I thought they would have emerged by now, and since they haven't, that means they were planning on hibernating from the start since they have to make a type of antifreeze to keep them from perishing out in the frozen winter months. Also, supposedly they make brown chrysalises in the winter and green chrysalises in the summer to blend better with their surroundings, although I can't confirm it since I've never seen one in the summer. I've moved them and their terrarium from the sunroom where it's likely too warm, to out in the garage where they'll be quite cold but protected.
   If any of you readers out there have overwintered Black Swallowtails before, please share your experience, good or bad.

I have two sets of pairs-where one chrysalis is attached to another. Ironically the last caterpillar to form a chrysalis attached itself to the first caterpillar to form one.

A few attached themselves to the terrarium itself. Note the silken stirrup it made to hang from.

Can you believe there's a butterfly in there? And I won't get to see if it emerges happily until maybe six months from now!


  1. How exciting! I can't wait to see the results.

  2. I can't wait! Let's open 'em now!! ;)

  3. wow. First I wondered why you have pictures of a dried piece of branch.. Well I finally realized there's a butterfly developing.

  4. I've never done anything like this, but it sure seems fascinating! I can't wait to see what happens. Will definitely stay tuned, and will not touch the dial. I love your blog, btw. :D