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Cooperative Extension San Joaquin County

Posts Tagged: Danaus plexippus

Migrating Monarchs Lovin' the Tithonia

First in series of four photos: Two monarch butterflies meeting in a Tithonia patch in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Presidential candidate Herbert Hoover campaigned for "a chicken in every pot and a car in every garage." (Now we have free-range organic chicken on every barbecue grill, and as many as three fuel-efficient cars with sophisticated high-tech gadgets in...

Posted on Monday, September 12, 2016 at 4:24 PM

The Joy of Rearing Monarchs Is Releasing Them

This newly eclosed female monarch just wants to linger. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Oh, the joy of rearing monarchs...from an egg to a caterpillar to a chrysalis to an adult... However, the ultimate joy is not in rearing them, but releasing them--from their confined and well-protected indoor habitat to that Spectacular Spacious World...

Posted on Monday, August 8, 2016 at 4:41 PM

Drama in the Pollinator Patch

A pollen-packing female longhorned bee, probably Melissodes agilis (as identified by Robbin Thorp, emeritus professor of entomology at UC Davis) wants the same flower that the male monarch has claimed. This is a Mexican sunflower, genus Tithonia. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

So here's this newly eclosed male monarch trying to sip a little nectar from a Mexican sunflower (Tithonia). A female longhorned bee, probably Melissodes agilis, seeks to claim it. There's no such thing as sharing, especially when nectar is at stake and...

Posted on Wednesday, August 3, 2016 at 4:53 PM

It Happens: Nature Isn't Perfect

A monarch chrysalis, cannibalized by a hungry caterpillar. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

If you engage in a mini-monarch conservation project, you know the joy of watching the egg-caterpillar-chrysalis-adult transformation. It's one of Nature's miracles. Then when you release the monarchs and watch them soar high, awkwardly fluttering their...

Posted on Monday, August 1, 2016 at 5:46 PM

Miracles Do Happen

A fifth instar caterpillar partially hidden in the narrow-leafed milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

For the last several months, we've seen monarchs laying eggs on our narrow-leafed milkweed. A daily check yielded "zero" caterpillars. Zero. Nada. Zilch. One reason is apparent: two nearby nests of Western scrub jays filled with chirping babies. ...

Posted on Wednesday, June 29, 2016 at 11:52 AM

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