Sunday, June 27, 2010

The tigers left and returned

The Plain Tiger butterfly and butterflies from this genus (Danaus) have a very short life cycle. The time it take from egg to adult is anywhere between 16-21 days ! For Plain Tiger the pupa period is between 5 to 7 days.

1. Two pupae the night before eclosion.  The pupa case is now transparent, showing the color of the upperside of the wings.20100611_D8020-340

2. A newly emerged female drying its wings. 20100612_D8021-340

3. Another female about to fly off.20100613_D8027-340
4. A freshly emerged male resting on its host plant. 20100613_D8035-640


A few days ago, I noticed a female Plain Tiger fluttering around my Asclepias fruticosa , a relative of the Blood flower (Asclepias  curassavica).


The female was feeding on the flowers and laying eggs on the leaves. I found many eggs and early instar caterpillars on the plant.  The female returned the next few days and I noticed it favored the Asclepias over Calotropis as host plant.