the family butterfly book by Rick Mikula

by Rick Mikula

2001 Award Winner!!!! Garden Writers Association of America
National Science Teachers Association National Science Teachers Association Recommendation

Projects, activities, and a field guide to 40 favorite North American species!


the family butterfly book Everyone enjoys seeing butterflies flitting about on a warm summer day, but few people realize that many species are endangered. Without help, nine out of ten caterpillars won't survive long enough to become butterflies. The "grandfather of butterfly farming," Rick Mikula, wants to improve these odds. In The Family Butterfly Book, Rick shares his vast knowledge, contagious enthusiasm, and deep respect for these fascinating creatures.

Though many of us know that caterpillars turn into butterflies, Rick explains the transformation from start to finish - egg to caterpillar to chrysallis to butterfly - and reveals where each stage can be found in the wilds of our own backyards. With stunning color photographs and detailed illustrations, Rick explains how to attract, safely catch and handle, and raise and support butterflies. He also discusses how to make irresistible habitats for butterflies and emphasizes the importance of basking sites, water sources, and shelter. Did you ever want to hand-feed a butterfly? Have a live-butterfly tree? Feature butterflies in special celebrations? Rick explains all that and more.

With vital facts, how-to projects, and intriguing discussions of butterfly behavior and lore, The Family Butterfly Book is sure to amaze and inspire readers of all ages.

Contents

Foreword by Dr. Orley R. Taylor...............................................viii
Preface and Acknowledgments....................................................ix

Chapter 1: Getting to Know Butterflies.........................................1
In love with Butterflies · Caterpillar and Butterfly Anatomy · Water on the Wings and Other Common Myths Debunked · Long-Distance Travelers · Skippers · Butterflies in Danger · Creating a Butterfly Habitat

Chapter 2: Inviting Butterflies into Your Garden...........................15
Facets of Your Garden · Favorite Nectar and Host Plants · Beyond Flowers · The Best Regional Backyard Butterfly Plants · Landscaping for Butterflies · Container Gardening · A Shady Situation · Water · Building a Waterless Pond · Basking Sites · Butterfly Condos and Other Lep Lures · Make Your Own Butterfly Box · Make Your Own Butterfly Net

Chapter 3: Taking a Butterfly under Your Wing...........................43
Bringing Up Butterfly Eggs · Raising Caterpillars · Make a Caterpillar-Rearing Container · Build a Hanging Butterfly Cage · Learn to Hand-Feed Butterflies · The Mating Game · The Magical Emergence of a Monarch · Butterfly Life Stages · To Free or Not to Free

Chapter 4: Starting Your Own Butterfly Farm..............................65
Raising a Quantity of Caterpillars · Containers and Cages · Making Caterpillar Cages · Tending the Chrysalis · Quirks and Peculiarities · Butterfly Atria · Marketing Butterflies · Releasing Your Butterflies · First Aid for Butterflies

Chapter 5: The Most Common Backyard Butterflies....................89
Learning to See · What's in a Name? · Swallowtails and Parnassians · Brush-footed Butterflies · Gossamer Wings · Sulphurs · Whites · True Skippers · Neotropicals · Oddities

Chapter 6: Taking the Plunge!.....................................................45
Share the Joy · Collecting Farther Afield · Look before You Lep · A Butterfly Winter · Photography Tips and Tricks

Appendixes..............................................................................156
Hardiness Zones for Common Host Plants · Make a Butterfly Envelope · Development Time for Selected Butterfly Species · USDA Permit to Transport Butterflies across State Lines · Butterfly Web Sites

Index........................................................................................162
Metric Conversion Chart...........................................................166