Chrysalis failure and success

I think bittster was right: holes in the chrysalis aren’t good. I have given up hope that this one will emerge.

crack in chrysalis

The chrysalis is getting more and more brittle, and I can see through a small slit that there is something inside, but it doesn’t look like it’s alive.

All the close-up, watchful examination of the site did reveal a successful one nearby, though. At first I thought it might be a dragonfly exuviae (Scrabble word!), based on the ribbed appearance of the end near the stem, but I think it’s just a bit too far away from the pond for this to be likely. It has the thin threads attaching it to the stem, typical of a chrysalis. Also, it seems that exuviae generally survive more intact than this; if it was an exuviae, it has taken quite a beating.

dragonfly exuviae or spent chrysalis?

exuviae or chrysalis?

At any rate, it’s good to know that one of them made it. Wish I could have been there to see it, but maybe next time.


3 thoughts on “Chrysalis failure and success

  1. Wow, I’ve never found a chrysalis, let alone an exuviea! You have a good eye for the little details.
    There are all kinds of parasites out there tying to kill the little caterpillars, wasps and tachnid flies are probably the worst. Someone once told me that’s the reason you don’t really see those big Luna moths so much any more, tachnid flies introduced to parasitize gypsy moths get so many of the other caterpillars too.

    • Interesting. I will have to look up tachnid flies and see if I recognize them from my garden.

      So, clearly, what we need to do is introduce another species to parasitize the tachnid flies in order to get our butterflies back? šŸ˜‰

  2. Pingback: Perpetual caterpillar season | MissingHenryMitchell

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