I think most of the caterpillars are in their 5th instar – the last one before they make a cocoon. Continue reading
This is a great time for butterflies at the farm. While we were walking around with the Prairie Enthusiasts, Jeff spotted the first Giant Swallowtail of the year in East Center Valley Prairie. We saw some Milbert’s Tortoiseshell caterpillars on the nettles in 3 Finger Valley, and a Black Swallowtail caterpillar on a stalk of Queen Anne’s Lace.
Black Swallowtail caterpillar Continue reading
This was the week of the Prairie Enthusiasts tour of our farm. It was great fun – 10 people came, some people I knew from the River Falls area, and several we had never met from LaCrosse, Winona, Buffalo City, and Waumandee. It was so nice to have prairie folks to talk to about our prairies. Continue reading
This is an entry about raising caterpillars into butterflies or moths. I’ve been doing a lot of that this summer – it’s a great science project for kids or adults. It’s fun, I always learn a lot, and it’s good for the butterflies and moths too – when you put the caterpillars in a cage, you protect them from predation, and many more of them live to grow up. Continue reading
The cecropias are getting bigger, but I’ve lost track of which instar they are. After the third, they look the same to me. Continue reading
I decided that every once in a while I should write a blog entry about our yard in St. Paul – so here’s one for the beginning of August. The hot weather has been good for the prairie plants and butterflies in the front yard. All the photos were taken in the last week. Continue reading
More hot days – they really slow down the work on the farm. We haven’t had much rain, but the puddle in the frog pond has gotten a little bigger, and now there are dozens of tiny tadpoles swimming in it. Continue reading
This was the week of the party, so most of our projects were party related. It has been so hot that we couldn’t do much outside. But on the day of the party it rained in the morning, and then never warmed up again – it stayed cloudy and relatively cool – perfect weather for an outside party. Continue reading
Most of the caterpillars are now in their 3rd instar, but I keep finding a few that are still in their first or second instar. Continue reading
The weather pattern is stuck in Hot these days. It was about 95 during the day and not much cooler at night. We had one nighttime rainstorm and the next day was much better – dryer and cooler.