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  • Bruce Siebold

Swallowtail Tales

Each summer pink and red coneflowers invite swallowtails to flutter amongst the Eighty Acres gardens. They sip the sweet nectars, and lay their eggs on ash, cherry and lilacs leaves. Once the egg hatch the caterpillars employ a variety of defense mechanisms including their brown and white color that resembles bird droppings, fake spots that look like snake eyes, and if disturbed emit a foul smelling acid designed to discourage the attacker. Swallowtails do not migrate like the monarch. Rather each fall they form a chrysalis and sleep the winter away on Eighty Acres in a form of hibernation.

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