Suspect Synchronicity

I suspect synchronicity was involved with these encounters.

My first eight-spotted forester moth (Alypia octomalculata) was seen on common milkweed during an outing on June 8.

The second was in my yard, late in the evening, nectaring on butterflyweed. That was June 10th.

Then, this afternoon (June 14), I made a loop to check the wild cherry tree for the eggs of a red-spotted purple butterfly. No luck. The tree grows in the shrubby border along the south side of our property. A porcelian vine hung from the shrubby tangle, and there on a leaf, was a caterpillar.

Naturally, the caterpillar was near the back of my 500-page Caterpillars of Eastern North America book. It was an eight-sided forester caterpillar! I’d never seen one before and immediately suspected a little synchronicity was involved in the sighting.

Eight-spotted foresters are a day-flying moth. Their brighter coloring makes them look more like a butterfly. If you look close in the top picture, you can see orange tufts on its front legs. The adults have 1 1/2 inch wingspan. They lay their eggs on grape vines and trumpet creeper. A full-grown caterpillar measures 1 1/8 to 1 1/4 inches long. This one was that long. The full-grown caterpillar will drop to the ground. There it will either pupate in the ground, in a crevice in old wood or in trash on the ground.

To reiterate, I definitely think synchronicity was involved here … besides, I see more when I’m outside than inside cooking or doing housework.

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7 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Therese on July 1, 2012 at 10:11 am

    Oh! Does my jaw hurt!!!! Stunning pictures. Never saw one before! Thank you.

    Reply

  2. It’s a gorgeous moth & caterpillar, one that I haven’t seen. It’s interesting that you’re suddenly seeing this bunch for the first time.

    Reply

    • I’ve seen the moth before. It’s relatively common. I’d never seen the caterpillar before. Now not seeing hardly anything with the drought and now the heat too.

      Reply

  3. The butterflies are pretty-fied.

    Reply

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