Well, most moths are quite fond of sugar water. No one quite knows why they prefer this particular mixture, but they sure do chow down on it. What you do, is you mix together water (doesn't matter if it is warm or cold...just don't make it freezing or piping hot) with A LOT of sugar. Then, you put a cotton ball into the mixture and let it soak it up. The reason you want to put it into a cotton ball is because if you just put it in a bowl, the moth may drown in its food. Kind of squeeze out some excess water, not a lot, just so the moth can't drown in it, then you're set to go.
Total Life Span
Total life span includes time spent in the larval and pupal stages, as well as the adult stage. Each species description in Butterflies and Moths of North America includes the number of annual "flights" for that species. A flight is a generation of adults. Thus, if a species has "two flights from May through September" it means that one generation will emerge from the pupal stage in spring and a second in summer. Actual months of emergence depend on latitude. Life spans of these two generations will be very different depending upon the species’ strategy for getting through the winter.
If the spring flight comes from eggs that were laid in fall by the previous year's summer flight, the total life span for the spring flight is 10-11 months. Eggs laid in May/June by those adults develop much more rapidly, due to higher temperatures, and adults emerge in about 2-3 months, resulting in a total life span of 3½-4 months for the summer flight, or less than half that of the spring flight. However, if the species is one in which adults of the summer flight overwinter, then the spring flight develops from eggs laid in spring, and in this case the summer flight is the longer-lived generation.
Not all species have two flights per year. Some species, particularly northern ones, have only a single flight annually, or a total life span of about a year. Some Arctic butterflies are believed to have a 2-year life cycle due to the extremely short growing season and the scarcity of high quality food for the larval stage. And some desert species, which normally have a life cycle of only one year, may hibernate as larvae or pupae for up to 7 years waiting for adequate rainfall to ensure growth of the host plant. On the other hand, southern species may have numerous fast-developing but short-lived generations each year. Finally, among the many species that are distributed over a wide latitudinal zone, it is not uncommon for northern populations to have one or two flights annually while more southerly populations have many flights annually. In some cases, the number of flights is considered taxonomically significant; for example, the Eastern and Canadian tiger swallowtails are now recognized as separate species, partially based on the fact that the Canadian species has only one flight per year vs 2-3 for the Eastern species.
It seems that some can live for quite a long time:
This is so freaky!
Last fall Mr. B found this big cocoon on a piece of kindling. He scraped it off,
put it in a baggie and Mo took it to his bug loving teacher at school.
Months passed. The cocoon was returned to Mo and he stuck it in his backpack.
Today we pulled it out and the cocoon had hatched with this HUGE moth.
I swear this thing is about 3.5" long.
Because the wood came from Mr. B's office, and because he gets wood from all over the world, we took it to bug loving teacher for identification since lately there have been several invasive species of bug introduced to our region that are killing off crops. Turns out this is a native species (whew!).
Apparently male butterflys have claspers.
i'm just throwing that out there for dlowan
Before I get attached to it, I would want to know if it is a boy moth or a girl moth. Will it grow into Mothra ? Or the mothman ? So many questions, so few answers..
Before I get attached to it, I would want to know if it is a boy moth or a girl moth.
Will it grow into Mothra ? Or the mothman ? So many questions, so few answers..
Good set of questions!!
If it grows up to be the next great Mothra, think of the revenue stream!!
Think of Boomerang Airlines!! A Green alternative to jetting across the country!