Rita Tarvin Rocket win streak reaches five G-Men ascend to 4-0 in SBAAC National Division with win at Williamsburg Jays soar to 3-1 with win at North Adams Young Lady Jays improving as season progresses Mary J Yockey Callie J Maynard Windle Blanton Daisy D Nevels RULH HS students visit Jungle Jims Aberdeen Council has busy end of the year River Village Christmas celebration begins SR 41 now open Gast’s three-point shower drowns the Tigers Lady Rockets capture wins over Ripley, Batavia Keplinger signs with Shawnee State Warriors down the Devils, fall to the Greyhounds Broncos edge out Williamsburg, 53-50 Carol S Newman John E Short RULH Elementary names ‘Go Green’ Students RE/MAX Local Experts opens in Williamsburg RULH wraps up ‘No Shave November’ fundraiser Eleven indicted by Brown County Grand Jury Donald C Vance John C Morris Rebecca E Simpson Hot start sets pace for Broncos’ 85-40 win over CNE G-Men get off to 1-1 start Lady Rockets start off season with tough string of road games Basketball Special: 2017-18 Katherine J Wolfe Virginia J Germann Rev Commadora Manning Mona K Kirker Ohio Rural Heritage Association donates to Food Pantry RULH FCCLA attends meeting in D.C. RULH MS students try ‘Tabletop Twitter’ Ripley Village Christmas update Bonita Planck Carol J Wagner Christopher O Richey Sr Five new members to enter WBHS Athletic Hall of Fame Blue Jays ready to soar under Woodward Fischer named to OPSWA All-Ohio First Team of football all-stars High school girls’ hoop action kicks off in Brown County Formation of new joint Fire & EMS District discussed RULH students learn about ‘Global Food’ Personal financial management class at RULH High School Dale G Ferriel John E Slack Nicholas A Arthur Bonnie J Roush Charles E Faul Phyllis A Mills Carl L Watson Marc W Bolce Robert R Moore Robert K King June R Williams William T Ishmael Sr Deborah J Napier High school hoop action begins Fayetteville SAY Girls Wing Soccer Team finishes season among state’s Final Four Devils visit Georgetown for OHSAA Foundation Games Grandfather charged in boy’s death ‘Real Money’ at RULH Middle School Ripley High School celebrates Veterans Day Reward increases for information leading to conviction in Stykes’ murder Ripley Village Christmas update Kenneth M McKinley Vilvens signs with Mount St. Joseph SBAAC awards girls tennis all-stars Layman inducted into Miami University Athletic Hall of Fame SBAAC hands out awards to First Team girls’ soccer all-stars John D Marks Aberdeen Police Department receives ‘Shop With a Cop’ donation Benefit to take place Nov. 17 for Grace Copple St. Michael students take part in Community Soup Supper Voters return Worley to the bench Ruby A Ratliff Donna J Moore Stella M Glasscock Ellen L Gelter Alverda T Guillermin Justin N Beach EHS dedicates ‘Kiser Court’ SBAAC awards First Team football all-stars, winning teams Sizer earns SBAAC American Division Volleyball Player of Year honors for 3rd straight year Broncos to host Blue Jays for OHSAA ‘Jimmy Young’ Foundation Game, Nov. 17 Vern W Kidd Jr Brown County Election Results – 2017 Michael D Hines Raymond W Napier Leslie E Boyle Gary L Barber RULH NHS welcomes new inductees K-9 Units and handlers visit RULH High School EMS members honored for service Road work on Ripley streets to begin

A look at Monarch caterpillars

On a recent trip to Vinton County to photograph the old Moonville Railroad Tunnel, we made a quick stop at the Wayne National Forest Welcome Center. The display of native plants was impressive as was the informative signage. As we walked around observing butterflies we started carefully checking for Monarch eggs and caterpillars. We were excited to find the tiny caterpillar in my photograph.

Monarchs lay eggs one at a time on milkweed plants, most frequently on the underside of leaves. When milkweed is scarce, they may load a single plant with eggs, but they usually lay only one egg on a plant. The eggs have ridges and taper to a point on top. The black head capsule of the caterpillar can be seen inside eggs about to hatch.

When temperatures are sufficiently warm – between 20 – 27 degrees C (70s and upper 60s F) – the eggs hatch three to five days after they are laid. In cooler temperatures they can take as many as 20 days to hatch. A newly-hatched caterpillar often eats its eggshell first. It will then eat the milkweed leaf, frequently leaving a characteristic arched hole in the leaf. Remember, Monarch caterpillars feed exclusively on plants in the milkweed family.

The caterpillars eat, grow and molt their outer skins four times, going through five instars (a period between larval molts). The fifth instar caterpillars are about two inches long and have yellow, black and white stripes and four fleshy black tentacles-two in front and two in the rear. In warm conditions, the caterpillars are ready to pupate 14 to 18 days after the eggs are laid, according to the authors of “Milkweed, Monarchs and More – A Field Guide to the Invertebrate Community in the Milkweed Patch.”

About 10 days after it is formed, the chrysalis begins to darken and the familiar patterns of the monarch butterfly’s bright, orange and black wings become visible under a transparent cuticle. The butterfly ecloses (emerge from pupal stage), pumps up and dries its wings and is ready to fly in a matter of hours.

Three or more generations emerge each summer. Those eclosing in June and July have an adult life span of four to five weeks. In the north, the final generation of Monarchs become adults in mid-august through mid-September and will migrate to overwintering sites in Mexico and along the Pacific coast of California, where some survive up to eight months. This journey might entail traveling nearly 2,000 miles one way. Once in Mexico, the butterflies congregate in massive numbers in a very few favored locales. Northward migration reaches the US in early March. Females lay eggs on emerging milkweeds. The offspring of this first brood then colonize the remainder of the breeding range in eastern North America, according to the ODNR publication, “Milkweeds and Monarchs.”

There is great concern over the decline in the Monarch populations. What can we do? Try including some native species of milkweed to your landscape. Monarch Watch is an excellent source for milkweeds, visit the website at monarchwatch.org/milkweed/market.

Picking tomatoes and cucumbers? Making salsa and pickles? Digging potatoes? This is certainly a busy time in the vegetable garden.

Don’t forget to take some time to walk around your flower beds and check for butterflies and caterpillars. Don’t focus on the weeds.

Remember to email your gardening questions to Brown County Master Gardener Volunteer Mike Hannah at mhannah2@msn.com.

http://ripleybee.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/web1_Caterpillar.jpg

By Faye Mahaffey

Faye Mahaffey is an OSU Master Gardner volunteer who writes on local gardening stories and techniques.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© Copyright The Ripley Bee