While I’ve raised Eastern Black Swallowtail caterpillars for several years now, this past year has been spectacular. I lost count of how many caterpillars there were, but by the end of the year, exactly 100 butterflies emerged! In addition, I still have 35 that are in their chrysalis state, who will most likely overwinter in that state, and emerge starting in spring.
Another aspect that was new was that for the first time I also had caterpillars for the Giant Swallowtail, the largest butterfly in North America (they really aren’t that much bigger!). See the photo below for the first one. I haven’t learned to tell the sexes apart for that species, as the coloration differences aren’t nearly as obvious as for the Black Swallowtail.
So here are the totals for 2020:
|49||Female Black Swallowtails|
|43||Male Black Swallowtails|
|1||Black Swallowtails, sex unknown|
I took a photo of each adult when it emerged, but didn’t want to create a post with all 100 images. So just click on the photo to have a new random image shown!