Thank you for the Kale info! “Food of Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus [L.]) Larvae in New Zealand” by G. W. Ramsay The most important thing to remember is that pumpkin and other alternative foods should only be fed to 5th instar Monarch caterpillars.   Usually the frass is dark green or even brown, but “pumpkin frass” looks like the food that fueled it. Thanks. Is there perhaps anyone in the Hutt valley area (I’m in Naenae) with anything spare.  Several folks mentioned that by the time the caterpillars get to their fifth instar, or their final stage, before morphing into a chrysalis, they will eat pumpkin and cucumbers. My boys are hungry! Some ate, but died in the same spot.  Yes, and here’s how to do it, Converting your Lawn to a Butterfly Garden, http://www.joannarosetidey.com/bombyx-mori-silk-worms/silk-worm-development-care/, http://nzetc.victoria.ac.nz/tm/scholarly/tei-Bio12Tuat03-t1-body-d5.html, https://texasbutterflyranch.com/2013/04/05/how-to-raise-monarch-butterflies-at-home/, http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/veg/leaf/checkered_white.htm, https://monarchbutterflygarden.net/when-monarch-science-fails-to-take-flight/, US Fish and Wildlife Service rules monarch butterflies worthy of protection, but doesn’t have resources to provide it, As ESA listing decision looms, new study challenges “dogmatic narrative” that monarchs are in decline, FREE Festival webinars available: butterflies, bats, bees and metamorphosis, Documentary chronicles year of chaos through lens of monarch butterfly migration, “Bat Man of Mexico” to dispel lies about bats and COVID-19 at FREE webinar, Desperately Seeking Milkweed: Monarch Butterfly Caterpillars’ Voracious Appetites Create Milkweed Emergency, Q & A: Seed-balls.com founder says “throw and grow” gardening often doesn’t work, Eastern Black Swallowtail Butterflies Everywhere: Here’s How to Raise Them at Home. I hope it was enough food. Silk moth caterpillars are fed a “cake” made of mulberry leaves and some other ingredients. If so, we might be able to feed the cake to hatchlings that appear before their food source is ready? I wonder if milkweed leaves could be adapted to this recipie, and whether the resulting “cakes” could be stored. Monarchs only eat milkweed. Dry powder can be stored. ”To the monarch science community: Stop blurring the lines between mass breeding and raising butterflies for release. The best time to do this is in spring so the plant has a chance to grow to a reasonable size. This year I will hit the window releasing them precisely timed with when they migrate comes through on the highway south here in the northwest corner of Arkansas.  The one on the right was reared on milkweed,” Ellen Reid wrote via email all the way from St. Arnaud, Victoria, Australia. . I wish there were a way to get some to those of you who live in a milkweed ” desert “. Sorry, I’m totally new at this and don’t really know what to expect. 🙂. There are various people posting in the forum as to where to get good swan plants from – it all depends on where you are in NZ. Photo by Ellen Reid. This is because it doesn't have the chemicals they need to Large butterfly, wingspan up to 100 mm Caterpillars feed on plants of the Asclepiadaceae family, usually Swan plant in New Zealand Alternative food plants are Tweedia and Araujia So it was amazing to see them on it. Both paper wasps and German wasps attack and kill monarch caterpillars. I’ve now found two them hanging upside down on other plants ready to make a chrysalis so I think you’re right, that’s exactly what’s going on – thank you, and sorry for the panic!!! That will be around 40. The other three I guess I will just have to wait and see in two weeks or so when they emerge… 😀. Ideally wash or hose the plant first, including ovum I also have a number of them on the parsley and dill plants. More likely a checkered white, which hosts on kale. The just eat the skin, btw. If you are raising caterpillars indoors and your caterpillars have eaten all the leaves off the stems of a milkweed plant, spearing raw butternut squash chunks on milkweed stems produces less mold and mildew and keeps caterpillars out of their frass. I just planted milkweed two months ago and am fascinated following this process. It worked.  “These cats are eating the skin of the cucumber,” relayed Addington. I need food for cats!! They demolished my kale but I let them. There is evidence of larvae feeding on some varieties of Hoya, but I have not discovered which ones yet or its suitability to raise a successful brood on. So excited as we don’t have much milkweed around here anymore. Do check out our forum. It’s very helpful. So, if the monarch caterpillars only feed on milkweed, why are they doing very well on the parsley and other plants in my garden (I have only one milkweed plant and that has not been used by the monarchs)? I live in Minnesota and grow hundreds of milkweed plants of different kinds all through my 1/3 acre yard. imago We’ll do this the next time we have several 5th stars at once. The sought-after plants are the main diet of monarch caterpillars, which build chryalises and, once they are butterflies, lay an average of 700 eggs each on the underside of the leaves. Professional butterfly breeders have been experimenting for years to keep their livestock well nourished when host plants become scarce. They look similar but have different antenna. Found three caterpillars today on potted milkweeds. Photo by Monika Maeckle, No milkweed? Can we invent something similar for monarchs? 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