grass skipper butterfly

9

I heard y'all like caterpillars.

Photos:
1 & 2: If these tawny emperors asked for my life savings I would drop everything and go to the bank. If they needed a kidney, I’d carve mine out with a box cutter. I would forego weeks of sleep to ensure they were happy (OH WAIT)

3: Chrysalis Watch status: 5! Did you know chrysalises will shake violently if they sense danger? Mounting these was basically a series of jump scares. I screamed every time, and yesterday when they were especially bad, I curled up in the fetal position the corner of my kitchen until I could breathe again.

4 & 5: Io moth molt day! Batch 2 (19 caterpillars, photo 4) are now 4th instar, batch 1 (10 caterpillars, photo 5) are 5th instar. That might be the last one before they pupate! I need to look into it–they make cocoons from leaf litter so I’ll want to prepare :3

6 - 8: Introducing a grass skipper caterpillar! I found this poor baby on my back patio yesterday morning. I looked him up and he eats St. Augustine (my mortal enemy in grass form). He is also a champion at camouflage.

9: The grass skipper caterpillar will probably become one of these. Which one? No idea.

June 9, 2017