This weekend has been of the delicious kind that overflows with happenings, one of which was the emergence of our first ever Orchard Swallowtail.
These are prone to pests, and we have had no success with them in the past. The little girls and I found several very large caterpillars at my parents house last year, and were thrilled with the find. It took a very short time after bringing them inside, before they began to twitch, sicken, and die.
The horror! We realised too late that my mother, (bug paranoid person that she is) had both an electronic emitting device (who knew they worked?) and a wall mounted dispenser which periodically pumps the air with pyrethrin – a natural insecticide.
The two hardiest specimens, after surviving the equivalent of caterpillar concentration camp, were eaten by pests while in the chrysalis.
So – we were very excited to have this alive, healthy butterfly emerge.