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Pinning up the Spicebush - Naturally Speaking with Marion Robertson

Thanks to two of our amazing volunteers, Marion Robertson and her daughter Sara for this article and the photos.  So interesting!

 

Sometimes female butterflies find the ' perfect ' site on which to lay their precious eggs.  She is quite capable of depositing 100 eggs.  This can be quite overwhelming for the host plant and in order to avoid starvation of all the caterpillars, transplanting of the eggs is required.

 

We simply pin the leaves on which the eggs are on to a new area.  Pinning causes little damage to the host plant and the eggs continue to develop, uninterrupted, on the underside of the plant away from the rain and eyes of predators.

 

These are spicebush swallowtail eggs and caterpillars being transferred to fresh spicebush host plants.

 

 Marion Robertson is co owner of Bee Sweet Honey Nature Company and Puslinch Naturally Native Trees

 

Spicebush egg that has been pinned on a leaf
Spice bush caterpillar feasting on a Spicebush leaf
Spicebush butterfly

 

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