Those Papilionidae are raised in Sulawesi in Puncak Palopo. That's why some aberrations pop-up from time to time.
I think Olivier really means 'wild caught' instead of 'raised'. I agree that every so often melanic or other aberrations can be caught, particularly at certain localities.
I caught wild melanic Graphium chironides and G. sarpedon at one particular point in the Lak Sao area of eastern Laos, but never saw any melanic specimens at another point a few kilometres up the road which had more butterflies. These aberrations are often caused by very localised weather conditions (generally a sudden large drop in temperature) just at a precise time in early pupal development.
Post by deliasfanatic on Apr 20, 2015 17:03:24 GMT
Re: the recent numbers of melanic androcles, I've thought that there must have been a weather condition of some sort, or perhaps a particular mating that brought out a genetic condition. I don't remember seeing other wild-caught aberrations suddenly pop up in quantity like this.
I have a couple of females of Graphium androcles which I would guess were probably hatched from wild collected pupae, or maybe reared larvae.
I try to breed the closely related but much smaller species, Graphium antiphates, here with limited success, and bred specimens tend to be smaller than wild ones. I get sporadic egg laying in a large flight cage, occasionally 50 eggs in a single day but very often the females just won't lay any eggs at all, despite providing them with growing host plants in precisely the right stage of growth. The females mostly only lay eggs inside the folded young leaf at the growing tip before it opens out to form a flat leaf.
In nature each large plant only has a very few larvae on it, usually only one, and the larva is able to eat lots of growing young leaves without spending valuable time moving far on the plant, and competing with other larvae. Larvae are in a race against time to eat as much as possible of the best quality leaves before the 'bell rings' for them to pupate. Anything that reduces the amount they eat in a day cannot be made up the next day, so they don't grow as big as normal. This is the general rule for larvae of non-gregarious species - keeping several larvae together results in smaller adults.