Friday, 3 July 2015

Milkweed Visitors

I took some time this morning to observe the insect visitors around one of our patches of milkweed plants.  Most of the milkweed that I checked today was starting to flower.  Milkweed can really be an attractive native plant to have around, both in looks and butterfly friendliness.  Now that it has been removed from the noxious weed list here in Ontario, hopefully more gardeners and nature lovers can see the potential of this native species.

Likely when you think of milkweed, the monarch is the first insect that you would associate with it.  However many other bugs take advantage of the plant as well.

Ctenucha moth
Red Admiral
Comma Butterfly
Northern Pearly Eye
Red Milkweed Beetle
Other insect life that I saw but did not photograph included mourning cloak, cabbage butterflies and common whitetail, our most regularly seen dragonfly around here.

The monarchs themselves have been rather scarce so far this year.  I have seen only one adult, but  have seen several eggs.  Each year I raise some monarchs, usually starting them from whatever eggs I can find.  The  two I have are doing well.

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