10/19/2021: The euphoria of a Euphoria sepulcralis F2
Another project I almost didn’t take up has again become quite fruitful.
While sweep-netting for miscellaneous bugs in Homestead, Florida, I was amused to find a mating pair of Euphoria sepulcralis. I was tempted to “throw them back”, as they were feeding on flower pollen and we had no fruit handy as an alternative for them, but decided to take the gamble of throwing some Bidens alba flowers in with them and seeing how they did without anything else on the way home.
The happy couple was pretty content with this and squirted out some larvae shortly after I got home, and 7 months later an F2 has been produced! These are very easy to rear and larvae grow terrifyingly fast; I only had eggs last week and already have third instar larvae! Unlimited quality leaf litter, heat, and dog food probably explain the growth but that’s still very fast for development! If I can get a colony of all life stages going in a large set-up I may offer them as a potential feeder one day, though that does them a slight disservice as the adults, though somewhat drab, are pleasantly metallic. Color variations are known across the range and it’s possible given the inbreeding and reproductive rate some more conventionally aesthetic mutants may pop up.