A. S. (Alpheus Spring) Packard.

Guide to the study of insects, and a treatise on those injurious and beneficial to crops: for the use of colleges, farm-schools, and agriculturists online

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Online LibraryA. S. (Alpheus Spring) PackardGuide to the study of insects, and a treatise on those injurious and beneficial to crops: for the use of colleges, farm-schools, and agriculturists → online text (page 23 of 29)
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For such larvae as begin to eat before the trees are leaved
out, the leaves of evergreens must be provided, pine leaves,
chickweed, grasses and mosses. Hibernating, living ' larvae,
must during the winter be kept dry, otherwise the damp seems
to hang about their fur, and causes them to be attacked by a
white fungus ; while smooth larvae require the natural damp-
ness of the soil. Mr. Gibson strongly recommends that during
the winter all cages containing larvae be placed in front of a
window facing the east or north-east, so that the inmates may
be kept as cool as possible.

When the moth is fairly out of the pupa, as remarked by Mr.
Sanborn, their wings often fail to properly expand, on account
of the want of moisture, " the insect being unable to expand its
wings in a heated, dry room. He has avoided this difficulty
by placing the insect just emerged, or about to come forth,
beneath a bell-glass, within which he had placed moistened
pieces of bibulous paper."

Mr. Trouvelot has noticed that the difference in size of the
wings of moths or butterflies is due to the fact that some of
the fluid thrown into the wings during their development
escapes from a break in the surface of the wing, so that this
wing is smaller than the other. He has, by pinching a wing
while thus developing, caused the fluid to "flow from the punc-
ture, and immediately the wing so wounded ceased to grow,
while the three others continued their development to its full
extent." ' "I have sometimes advanced the development of the
wings of Telea Polyphemus. I selected for this purpose,
pupje very far advanced in their transformation, as is shown by
the looseness of the pupal skin, and by the color of the wings
of the moth, which can be seen through it. I took carefully
the pupal skin from around the moth and suspended the insect
in the position that Lepidoptera take when emerging from the


chrysalis. It is very rare that the wings of such an insect
are developed, though I have obtained some perfect specimens
in this way ; and in one instance the development of the wings
took place only three days after the pupal skin had been
removed. Success is more certain if the insect is put under a
glass jar with a moistened sponge, and something for the insect
to hang from ; the dampness of the air in the jar will prevent
the soft wings from drying too fast, and when the time arrives
for the insect to accomplish its transformation, the fluid will be
active. Such an insect has much analogy with a vertebrate
born prematurely ; the insect, like the quadruped, remains
almost motionless till the natural time for its birth arrives."

PAPILIONIDJE Latreille. The Butterflies, or Diurnal Lepi-
doptera, are at once distinguished from the moths by their
knobbed antennae, though they are sometimes nearly filiform.
The body is small, but there is a greater equality in the size of
the three regions than in the moths, the abdomen being much
shorter and smaller, as a general rule, than in the lower fami-
lies. The ocelli are usually wanting ; the spiral tongue or
maxillae, are long and well developed ; and the wings are car-
ried erect when in repose, and are not held together during
flight by a bristle and socket as in the moths.

The larvae vary greatly in shape and in their style of orna-
mentation, but they uniformly have, besides the thoracic legs,
five pairs of abdominal legs. The pupa is called a " chrysalis"
or "aurelian" from the bright golden hues which adorn those
of many species. They disappear as the wet tissues beneath the
pupa-skin harden just before the fly appears. The pupa is usu-
ally angulated on the sides of the thorax and along the upper
side of the abdomen. A few species, such as those of Vanessa,
hibernate, while several species, such as Vanessa Antiopa, are
social as young larvae. The most " perfect state of societj^ is ex-
hibited by a Mexican butterfly (Eucheira socialis Westwood) ,
the caterpillars of which construct a very strong parchment-like
bag, in which they not only reside, but undergo their change to
the pupa state." Butterflies also occasionally swarm while
in the perfect state, such as species of Colias, Cynthia and
Danais, multitudes of which are sometimes seen passing over-


head in long columns. They are truly tropical insects, since
Gerstaecker mentions that three times as many species (GOO)
occur at a single point (Para, Brazil) as in all Germany, where
scarcely 200 species live. There are about 5,000 species known ;
900 inhabit North America and probably the number will be
increased to a thousand, while Mr. Scudder enumerates ninety-
five species which have already been found in New England.

The noble genus Ornithoptera has very long, slightly knobbed
antennae, and a well developed prothorax ; while the fore-
wings are very large, elongated, triangular, and the hind wings
are relatively smaller and rounded. 0. Priamus Linn, is found
in the Moluccas. There are twenty species known. The larvae
differ from those of Papilio in having an external forked
sheath for the "tentacles." The pupa is sustained by a silken
thread on each side, attached to a small lateral tubercle.

Of the extensive genus Papilio, or "Swallow-tail," over 300
species are known. The larva is rather short and stout, with a
v-shaped scent-organ, or "tentacles." The pupa is supported
by a filament passed entirely around it. The common P. As-
terias Drury appears in New England in June, when it lays its
eggs on the leaves of parsley and other umbelliferous plants.
From this brood a new set of butterflies appear in August.
The larva is yellow, striped and spotted with black, and when
irritated, pushes out, from a slit in the prothoracic ring, a
v-shaped, yellow, fleshy, scent-organ, used as a means of de-
fence. The chrysalis is free, attached by the tip of the abdo-
men and supported by a loose silken thread, which is passed
over the back. It lives in this state from nine to fifteen days.
It has two ear-like projections on each side of the head and a
prominence on the back of the thorax.

Mr. W. Saunders has received from St. John's, Newfound-
land, several specimens of a butterfly, one of which I have before
me, and which seems to be a very remarkable variety of P.
Asterias, rather than a distinct and undescribed species, as
supposed by my friend to whose collection it belongs, lie
writes me, after giving a detailed description, presented below,*

* " I'apilio brevicauda Saunders. Female. Expands three and one-fifth
head, palpi and antenna- black; thorax black, fringed *vith yellow hairs <>n each
side, for about half its length; body above black, with a row of seven or i-i-.'ht
yellow spots along each side which are largest about the middle of the row; under


that "this species resembles P. Asterias, but differs from it
in many points. In P. Asterias the palpi are edged within with
yellow ; in P. brevicauda they are black. P. Asterias has two
yellow spots above at the base of the antennae, which are either
wanting, or exceedingly faint in the other species. P. Asterias
has a spot of bright yellow on the anterior edge of each side of
the thorax ; P. brevicauda has a fringe of duller yellow, extend-
ing fully half the length of the thorax. On the primaries the
discal bar in P. Asterias is much narrower, and the inner row
of spots smaller and bright yellow, the upper one in the row
being divided ; in P. brevicauda the spots are fulvous, the upper

side of the body black, the abdomen being furnished with two rows of yellow spots
corresponding with those above, with several additional spots within near the tip;
feet black. Primaries above brownish black, with a bar of yellow across the end
of the discal cell; just beyond this is a row of eight spots, extending across the
Aving nearly parallel with the outer margin ; the upper one, which rests on the sub-
costal vein, is yellow, elongated and irregular, with a blackish dot beyond the mid-
dle; the lower ones are fulvous ; the second and third smaller than the first and of
an elongated, triangular form, with the apex pointing inwards; the fourth, fifth
and sixth are similar in shape, but larger, the latter with its apex partially wanting;
the seventh spot is wider and slightly concave on both the inner and outer edges,
the inner edge is broken; the eighth is long, narrow and irregular, with its lower
edge close to the hind margin of the wing. Behind the upper spot in this row is a
second yellow spot nearly round. Between these and the outer margin is a second
row of spots, eight in number, but much smaller in size. These are all yellow, the
three upper ones nearly round, the lower ones more or less elongated, the lowest
contracted in the middle as if composed of two spots joined together; the fringe
of the wing is also spotted with yellow, the spots corresponding in number and
position with those forming the second row.

" Secondaries above brownish black, with a row of seven large spots nearly con-
fluent beyond the middle, in continuation of those on primaries, all more or less
triangular in form, the middle ones somewhat elongated; these spots are yellow
above and at the sides, fulvous from near the middle to the outer edge; the fulvous
marking is less distinct on the second and third spots; within the margin is a sec-
ond row, all yellow excepting the upper one which is tinged with fulvous; the up-
per spot is oblong, the second nearly round; third, fourth and fifth lunular, nearly
equal in size; the sixth similar in form, but much smaller; while the inner one is
irregularly concave above, holding in the cavity the eye-like spot at-the anal angle.
On the outer edge are six yellow spots, larger and more striking than those form-
ing part of the fringe on the primaries. The space between the two inner rows of
spots is sprinkled with metallic blue atoms. At the anal angle is a round, red spot,
with a black dot in it below the middle, and a crescent of bluish atoms above;
tails very short, scarcely one-eighth of an inch long, not more than half the
length of those of P. Asterias.

"Under surface of wings somewhat paler in color, with spots corresponding to
those above. The upper spot of the inner row on the primaries is tinted with
fulvous; the spots composing the inner row on the secondaries are more decidedly
and uniformly fulvous ; the four upper spots in the second row are also streaked
with the same color; the bluish atoms between the rows are partially replaced by
green ones." Taken at St. John's, Newfoundland.


one is undivided. The inner row of spots on the secondaries
are also entirely yellow in P. Asterias, smaller and very differ-
ent in form from those on P. brevicanda. The second row of
spots is also smaller in P. Asterias, and the red spot at the
anal angle paler, with a smaller black dot in it, and a wider
crescent of bluish atoms above. The length of the tail, which
is one of the most striking points of difference, has already
been noticed."

We have compared some interesting varieties of P. Asterias
in the Museum of the Boston Society of Natural History, col-
lected about Boston by Mr. Shurtleff, which approach (in the
reddish hue of the spots, usually yellow, especially on the under
side, and the shortness of the tail) the Newfoundland speci-
men kindly sent us by Mr. Saunders, and strongly suggest the
inference, with which Messrs. Scudder and Sanborn agree, that
P. brevicauda is a very remarkable
local variety of P. Asterias.

The yellow Papilio Turnus Linn, flies
in June and July through woods and
about lilacs. Its larva feeds on the
apple and wild thorn ; it is green with
two e3 T e-like spots on the thorax, and
pupates in the middle of August. The
black dimorphic ? form, P. Glaucus,
is found in the Southern States. P.
I humus Boisd. (Fig. 180) originally Fi s- 18 -

fuu iid in Mexico, has been found in Kansas, near the Rocky
Mountains, by Mr. James Ridings. He states that it strikingly
resembles P. Turnus, but has longer antennae, -with longer, more
curved fore-wings, besides differing in other characters. It ex-
pands nearly five inches. P. Troilus Linn, appears more com-
monly southward. The larva feeds on the sassafras and lilac
trees, and was found by Mr. Saunders feeding, rolled up on
a leaf, on the spice bush, August 3d. "Its length was about
one and three-fourths inches, the body being thickest from the
third to the fifth segments. The head is rather small, flat in
front, slightly bilobed, dull flesh color, with a faint tinge of
brown. The body is bright pea-green, with a yellow stripe
across the anterior part of the second segment ; edged behind
with dull black. On the fourth segment are two prominent


eye-like spots, of dull yellowish or yellowish buff, encircled
by a fine ring of black, and a large black pupil filling most
of the lower portion. The posterior portion of this black
pupil is encircled by a shining bluish black ring, the anterior
portion of which strikes a little beyond the middle of the
pupil ; there is also a line of black in front of the pupil ex-
tending nearly across the yellow portion, and a pale pinkish
gpot in the upper part of the j^ellow which is edged with a
slightly darker shade. On the fifth segment are two large,
irregular spots of the same color, pale buff, encircled by a faint
ring of black, and having a faint pinkish spot on the anterior
portion of each ; these spots are nearer to each other than
those on the fourth segment, a portion of the space between the
fifth and sixth segments being deep black ; each segment, from

the sixth to the eleventh in-
clusive, has four blue dots,
encircled with black, those on
the seventh, eighth and ninth
segments being largest. On
each side, close to the under
surface, is a wide yellow
stripe, gradually softening
into the green above, and
edged below with blackish

brown. Immediately below the spiracles is a row of blue dots
edged with black, one on each segment from the sixth to the
twelfth inclusive. The under surface is dull, pale greenish, or
yellowish white, having a decided reddish tinge as it approaches
the yellow stripe on the sides. The feet partake of the same
general color." P. Pliilenor Fabr. is black, with a greenish
reflection towards the outer border, with whitish spots on the
margin, and on the hind wings six whitish lunules. The larva
is brown, with two lateral rows of small, reddish tubercles,
and two long tubercles on the prothoracic segment. The
chrysalis (Fig. 181, side and dorsal view) is grajash violet, yel-
lowish on the back, with the head ending in a truncated cone.
The genus Parnassius has short, thick antennae, with a
rounded club, and the fore-wings are much rounded at the
apex ; it inhabits mountains. P. Smintheus Doubleday, with
three other species, is found in the Rocky Mountains.



The White Turnip, or Cabbage butterfly, Pieris oleracea Harris
(Fig. 182 ; a, larva), is well known as being often destructive to
cruciferous plants. In this genus, and its allies, the wings are
rounded and entire on the edges, and are grooved on the inner
edge to receive the abdomen. .The greenish caterpillars are
slender, "tapering a very little toward each end, and are spar-
ingly clothed with a short down which, is quite apparent, how-
ever, in Pieris oleracea." We have found the larvae of this
species on turnip leaves in the middle of August, at Chamber-
lain Farm in Northern Maine. They are of a dull green, and
covered with dense hairs. They suspend themselves by the
tail and a transverse loop ; and their chrysalids are angular
at the sides, and pointed at both ends. (Harris.) Pieris
oleracea is white, with the
wings dusky next the body,
the tips of the fore-wings are
yellowish beneath, and the
hind wings are straw-colored
beneath. The yellowish, pear-
shaped, longitudinally ribbed
eggs, are laid three or four
on a single leaf. In a week
or ten days the larvae are
hatched. They live three Fig. m

weeks before becoming full-fed. The chrysalis state lasts ten
to twelve days. There is an early summer (May) and a late
summer (July) brood. Pieris rapce Schrank has been intro-
duced from Europe and is now found in the vicinity of Quebec
and the northern parts of New England.

P. Protodice Boisd. and Lee. is found southward. The
head of the chrysalis, kindly sent me by Mr. Saunders, is pro-
longed into a tubercle, which is equilaterally triangular, seen
in outline, with two small tubercles near the base. On the
thorax is a high, thin dorsal ridge, edged with red. On each side
of the abdomen is a ridge, largest anteriorly, and rising into
a thin tubercle on the second ring. There is a thin dorsal
ridge on the posterior half of the abdomen. The tip is deeply
excavated by a furrow extending the whole length of the ter-
minal ring. There are seven rows of black dots on each ring.


It is pale whitish straw yellow throughout, with thick, black
dots on the anterior half of the bod} T . It is .70 of an inch in
length. It also occurs in California.

The Sulphur-yellow butterflies, Colias, of which C. Pliilodice
Godart, our most common butterfly, is a type, occur everywhere.
There are two broods, one appearing in April and May, and the
other in Jury. Mr. Saunders gives me the following history
of this butterfly: "The female deposited her eggs on the 24th
of July ; they were very long, tapering at each end, with twelve
or fourteen raised, longitudinal ribs, and smaller cross lines in
the concave spaces between them. They hatched 011 the 31st.
The freshly hatched larva is about a thirteenth of an inch long ;
the head is black, and the bod}^ dull yellowish brown. When
five-eighths of an incjr long, it is nearly the same as when ma-
ture ; the head being dark green and slightly downy, with
minute hairs, which also give a downy appearance to the whole
body, which is also dotted minutely with paler points. There
is a yellowish white stripe, on each side close to the under sur-
face. Beneath, the body is slightly paler than above. The full
grown larva is an inch long, and differs from the } r oung in hav-
ing an irregular streak of bright red running through the
whitish lateral line. It feeds on the clover and lupine, and on
the cultivated pea. It is not unlike a saw-fly larva in its ap-
pearance and movements, feeding on the upper surface of the
leaves and twisting its body into a coil when disturbed. The
chrysalis is about seven lines long, girt with a silken thread
across the greatest diameter of the body, which is full and bulg-
ing on the sides. The head is pointed conically, with a purplish
red line on each side, running to the tip and margined behind
with yellow. The body is pale green, with a yellowish tinge,
and a ventral line of a darker shade formed by a succession of
minute, yellowish dots ; a yellow stripe runs along the side on
the five hinder segments. Beneath, on the seventh, eighth and
ninth rings, is a blackish brown line on each side, deepening
in color about the middle of each segment, and a dorsal line
of dark green about the same length. It remains in the chrys-
alis state about ten days."

Mr. Scudder has described three species of this genus from
the north. C. Labradorensis we have taken abundantly in


Labrador. It represents our C. Philodice. C. interior lives
north of the Great Lakes, and C. occidentalis ranges from
Fort Simpson to the Gulf of Georgia.

The species of a closely allied genus, Terias (T. Lisa and
T. Delia}, are much smaller and are more tropical.

The genus Danais has antenna) with a long and curved knob,
tlu' head and thorax are spotted with white, and the wings are
round and entire. The caterpillars have projecting, thread-like
horns, arranged in pairs on the top of the second and eleventh
scii incuts, and the body (D. Archippus) is banded with yellow,
black and white. The oval chrysalids are short and thick and
decked with golden spots. The larva of D. Archippus Ilnrris
feeds on the silk-weed, Asclepias, and matures in about two
weeks, changing its skin three times, while the chrysalis state
lasts for ten or twelve days. The butterfly appears from July
to September.

A very beautiful and quite aberrant tropical genus is Heli-
conia, in which the wings are small, very narrow and often very
transparent, while the antennae are nearly as long as the body.
The larvae are either long, cylindrical and spinose (Acraea
violas), or furnished with several pairs of long fleshy append-
ages, and the chrysalids are often brilliantly spotted with
golden and suspended by the tail.

According to H. W. Bates (Transactions of the Entomolog-
ical Society, 1857), the venation of the wing in many species
of Jft'c/miiiti* and Ithomia, which are allied to Heliconia, varies
in different individuals of the same species. The sexes have
the closest resemblance in color and -markings. They are
very gregarious in their habits. The Brazilian " H. Melpomone
varies in a curious manner. I have no doubt they are hybrids
(i. e. the varieties), and I can almost point out the species with
which it hybridates. Strange to say, the Irybrids occur in one
district and not in another, and one style of hybrids only occur
in one district and not in the others, the species being equally
abundant in all the districts."

Anjuintls is readily recognized by the numerous round and
triangular silver spots on the under side of the hind wings.
The very spiny caterpillars have a round head, and the spines
are branched, two of the prothoracic ones being the largest and


reaching over the head. The angular arched chrysalids have
the head either square, or slightly notched, with a smooth
thorax, while on the back of the abdomen are two rows of
usually gold colored tubercles. They usually feed on violets,
and may be found from May to July. Argynnis Idalia Drury
is found the last of summer. A. Cybele Fabr. is found in the
Middle States, and A. Atlantis Edwards in the White Moun-
tain valleys and the colder portions of New England.

Mr. C. A. Shurtleff discovered the larva and pupa of the lat-
ter, July 17th, at Eastport, Maine, and being with him at the
time, we made the following description of them : The larva
is uniformly cylindrical, tapering alike towards each end of the
body. On each side of the vertex of the head is a small low
spine, giving the head an oblong shape when seen side wise.
The front is broad, somewhat square, flattened, with scattered
hairs. On the first and second thoracic rings are two large
subdorsal spines and minute lateral warts bearing small bris-
tles, and on the hind edge of these rings are two large spines.
On the third thoracic ring are three large spines. On each
abdominal ring are six stout spines of the same size and placed
equidistant on the upper surface. The bristles on the spines
are nearly one-half as long as the spines themselves. Small pa-
pillae, giving rise to bristles, are scattered over the body, with
a row of them above the abdominal feet. The triangular anal
plate is small, papilliform and prominent. The larva is dark
velvety purple, the base of the head being of a pale horn color ;
the body beneath is scarcely paler than above ; the spines are
pale livid on the basal half. They were full-fed and ready to
pupate July 17th. The head of the pupa is square in front.
On the prothorax are two subdorsal spines, and an elevated
mesial ridge on the mesothoracic ring, rising highest behind.
At the base of each wing is a sharp, conical, prominent papilla,
immediately succeeded by a broad, thin-edged dilatation, con-
stricted and appressed to the base of the abdomen ; this is the
internal angle of the wings. On the abdomen are two lines of
subdorsal sharp papillae, one on each side. The wings extend
to the fifth abdominal ring, and from this point the abdomen
rapidly tapers to the tip. The surface of the body is wrinkled
with conspicuous black spiracles. Its general color is chest-



nut brown, mottled with black ; the wings being black at the
base. The sexes of the rare and superb A. D!<in ('minor differ
remarkably, the male being dark velvety brown, with ;i deep
orange border, while the female is blue-black, with lighter blue
spots and patches on the border of the wings. It has been
taken in West Virginia, Georgia and Arkansas.

A. Aphrodi'e (Fig. 183*) abounds in the Northern States.
According to Scudder, it is double-brooded, appearing about
the middle of June, and fresh specimens late in August. A.

Online LibraryA. S. (Alpheus Spring) PackardGuide to the study of insects, and a treatise on those injurious and beneficial to crops: for the use of colleges, farm-schools, and agriculturists → online text (page 23 of 29)