Entomology - green caterpillar to moth

A while ago I put a few green caterpillars into a jar to watch how they went about changing into a moth.

I've always thought the green caterpillars that ate my aquaponics garden were from the white cabbage moth. The ones that fly around during the day.

But last night in the hours just before dawn, the jar on my desk suddenly erupted into life and out flew this.

In this part of the world, this is one of those crazy moths that love flying around lights at night.

I don't know how they get anything done.

It seems they do this because they normally navigate by the moon. When using the moon for navigation, you can fly in a straight line, or very close to a straight line, by just keeping the thing up there and a little to the left or whatever. If it's up there and a little to the left, and you veer off a bit to the right, it becomes up there and a little more to the left. So you turn left a bit.

The moon is so far away, that even though it's moving as far as a moth is concerned, it's a pretty stationary object in the sky. Perfect to act as a lighthouse.

But when you fly past an artificial light thinking it's the moon, you see it change it's position, so you turn a bit, but it's still changing position, so you turn a bit more. You end up flying around and around until you vomit or die.

If your flight plan happens to be to fly almost exactly at the moon, and your moon is a candle, you don't even get to the throwing up stage. You just die.

So I had a look in the jar and saw this.

I cant tell if this photo of the moth's old home is interesting or not.

I'm guessing it's a little bit interesting.

I should really pt the camera on the one on the left and watch it emerge, but instead in the interests of bread, I just put the jar outside.

120 Things in 20 years - Entomology - green caterpillar to night time moth. Who knew.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Popular Posts