To end on a happier note, here's a recent picture of a healthy wild 3rd instar larva (note the pale horns, indicating recent skin change). Most have now changed into this instar.
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
The Festival of Dead iris larvae
Last Sunday's outing (gentlemen, we must all Come Out...) in pursuit of iris was particularly baleful, producing just two dead 2nd instar larvae - in 2 hrs 30 mins of actual searching. My guess is that they'd succumbed during / after that very wet week at the end of August, effectively to a 'wet weather virus'. In fact, mortality in the wild so far this autumn seems to be unusually high - and that's after a very poor egg lay.
Has anyone else encountered larvae dying off like this, either in the wild or in captivity?