Tuesday, August 22, 2017

An Exciting Find

The other weekend i saw two newly emerged larvae, or maybe already molted to its first instar. They are on citrus leaves, but i didn't see them eating, just attached themselves there. I wanted so much to bring them to the city, feed them there and document/see the transformations. In a way i am so envious of my friends who rear butterfly or moth eggs into eclosion or emerging of the adult butterfly. That way they were able to get very nice pictures of the adults still drying their wings. At that condition the forewings are not fluttering yet and much easier to photograph.

Then i left on Sunday for another week of work in the city.

This last weekend, upon reaching home i immediately looked for it in the same branch, and yes it is still there! However, its twin is already lost, maybe it became food for the birds or mother's chicken roaming around. This is how the larva has grown after a week. 

 Look at it closer, there are seemingly 2 eyes and a headband reminiscent of some tribal design! It actually is lovely. I touched it with a leaf on the forehead, prodding the pair of pink osmeterium to emerge. I hurriedly got the camera, hold it with the right hand, touched it again with my left hand for the osmeterium. However, no amount of proddings scared it that much for its osmeterium to emerge again. Hmm,  maybe it was not scared of me, or maybe it is shy of the camera!

I hope i can still see the pupa when i go home again next weekend. I am so sorry, i cannot bring it to the city, as no citrus tree leaves are available near my place. I will be so excited if i can see it in pupa stage, which i can bring to the city and wait for eclosion!

I cannot wait for the actual emergence before posting. Am too eager, is it obvious! Above will be the picture  of that larva if it is a male Scarlet Mormon, Menelaides deiphobus rumanzovia Eschscholtz 1821. 

  However, if it is a female this will be its form showing the dorsal side.

...and this is the female's ventral side! 

Now, can you understand my enthusiasm in finding the Scarlet Mormon's larva? I will show you the pupa next time, if i will still be lucky, or if it is still lucky! 


  1. Wow - what an amazing experience!

  2. lovely butterflies but the little caterpillar looks scary :) :)

  3. What beautiful butterflies!!! Swallowtails love the citrus here and I was excited to see the cats and then the butterflies flying around later.

    Have a great week ~ FlowerLady

  4. Hello, the larva is just amazing. I love the beautiful butterflies. Lovely series of photos. Happy Tuesday, enjoy your day!

  5. That is exciting! What a cute, little caterpillar and a beautiful butterfly! Good luck!

  6. So beautiful butterflies! Lovely photo series!

  7. Great macros of those small critters. The buttes on my blog are the result of erosion - there aren't any old buildings in my part of the world, and most of my state is fairly empty.

  8. I love these as you know...They looks like snakes to try to avoid being eaten....Michelle

  9. That is a very beautiful butterfly


  10. Very nice shots - its a remarkable process from caterpillar to butterfly.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

  11. Nice close up of the intriguing greenie!


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