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How one man repopulated rare butterfly species

Rockinruby

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2013
Messages
2,740
I found this to be very interesting. :read: It's amazing how one person can make such an impact. :appl: Enjoy! :wavey:

How one man repopulated a rare butterfly species in his backyard
http://www.vox.com/2016/7/6/12098122/california-pipevine-swallowtail-butterfly-population

As an aquatic biologist at the California Academy of Sciences, Tim Wong rarely has a dull day.

Whether he’s hanging out with an albino alligator, swimming with Javanese stingrays, or treating a hungry octopus to a hamster ball full of shrimp, Wong is constantly caring for one of the science museum’s 38,000 animals.

But outside of work, the 28-year-old devotes the bulk of his free time to raising butterflies, a hobby he picked up as a kid.

"I first was inspired to raise butterflies when I was in elementary school," Wong says. "We raised painted lady butterflies in the classroom, and I was amazed at the complete metamorphosis from caterpillar to adult."

In an open meadow near his home, Wong spent his days catching, studying, and raising any butterflies he could find.

Years later, he learned about the pipevine swallowtail — which had become increasingly rare in San Francisco — and he made it his personal mission to bring the butterfly back.
image_4437.jpg
 

tyty333

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Dec 17, 2008
Messages
21,680
Very cool...love the work he has taken on to put the butterfly back in the San Francisco area. One person can make a difference!
Good story!
 

Rockinruby

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 27, 2013
Messages
2,740
tyty333|1470526442|4063151 said:
Very cool...love the work he has taken on to put the butterfly back in the San Francisco area. One person can make a difference!
Good story!
Agreed! He did a wonderful thing! :appl:
 

iLander

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 23, 2010
Messages
6,731
What a stunning butterfly! Gorgeous! I'm glad people are taking the time to see the larval plant with butterfly connection.

I've been working on a local species in my yard for several years now. The zebra longwing was depleted in our area after a hurricane several years back. The local conservation society was in a tizzy. The host plant is hard to propagate, but I've been planting and replanting that sucker for the last 4 years, and I've finally got a handle on what this touchy little plant likes. This year, I feel like we finally have plenty of longwings, and neighbors have remarked that they have seen a lot of them around this year. :bigsmile: They're a territorial butterfly, that flies very slowly, so they float around the yard like fairies. It's a ton of fun.

I'm also working hard on another species, the Malachite butterfly. Annoyingly, it's larval plant has been named as an invasive exotic! This means the plant cannot be sold or cultivated by nurseries. So what is the butterfly supposed to do?!! :( I found some growing in my side yard, just a smidge. I'm leaving the whole side yard unmowed, and it's multiplying. I haven't seen a Malachite yet (I saw one, once, many years ago. It was so large and spectacular, I was breathless!), but my fingers are crossed. My side yard looks like hell, but it's worth it to possibly relive that moment.

You should try a butterfly garden, Rockinruby! :wavey: They're amazingly rewarding, and only need a full sun or light shade area. Just google your state and butterflies, or call your county agricultural extension service. They probably have a brochure, and hey, it's something free from the government. :)
 
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