Posts tagged with monarch butterfly

Cuckoos, toxic caterpillars, citizen science, and cinerarias

  • Shining cuckoo in gum-tree. Image: Rob Lynch, New Zealand Birds Online
  • Juvenile shining cuckoo with monarch caterpillar, Upper Moutere. Image: Anna Barnett, New Zealand Birds Online
  • Magpie moth caterpillar (Nyctemera annulata). Image: Gonzalo Avila, Plant & Food Research
  • Cinerarias. Image: Colin Miskelly, New Zealand Birds Online

Cuckoos are well-known for eating spiky and poisonous foods, but did you know they can eat toxic monarch caterpillars? Shining cuckoo The pure, whistling call of the shining cuckoo is New Zealand’s harbinger of spring. This small cuckoo is one of our few migratory landbirds, spending the winter on tropical islands east of Papua New Guinea,… Read more »

Name our monarch butterflies!

NatureSpace has an exciting new display – monarch butterfly caterpillars! Watch them grow from a caterpillar to a butterfly. We need your help. The caterpillars don’t have a name! What should we call them? Put your suggestions in the comments, tweet them to @tepapa or email ruth.hendry@tepapa.govt.nz. We’ll pick the best two names and let… Read more »

A Menu for Monarchs

sharell-monarch-cat2

  In the summer months I get plenty of phone calls and emails from monarch butterfly fanciers, all with a common problem: “My swan plants are almost stripped bare yet I have so many monarch butterfly caterpillars I really don’t know what to do. Is there anything else I can feed the caterpillars on?” This… Read more »