Sunday, 16 July 2017

Phyllodesma japonica

This wasn't the most successful brood of the year. Everything started well. They simply rushed through the first four instars. That was because we had a fairly cool start of the Spring. But, then suddenly temperatures started rising and it stopped raining for weeks. When the heatwave reached its peak with temperatures around 34°C most of the caterpillars started to die. Too extreme breeding conditions, it rarely ends well. Especially not with Phyllodesma species which generally prefer more moderate conditions, with temperatures between twenty and twenty five degrees Celsius. They are best kept in netted cages when they reach the fourth instar, to allow for a good airflow. The pupal stage is short after the first generation. Under warmer conditions they almost always produce a second flight in August. The pupae of the second generation will overwinter.


Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L5 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L5 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L5 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L4 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L4 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L4 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L4 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L3 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L2 on Salix cinerea

Phyllodesma japonica caterpillar
Phyllodesma japonica L1 on Salix cinerea