I keep records from year to year on flight times, eclosions, foodplant preferences, rearing difficulties, etc.. My observations/summaries are entered below.

Livestock of this species and several other species is usually available in the fall. Click on LIVESTOCK to see a price list.

2000 Season Summary

June 22: Cocoons were taken out May 20 (two females), May 22 (three males) and May 29 (10 mixed) hoping for June 10 and June 17 eclosions. Cool weather resulted in first eclosions coming on June 16--two females between 3-4 p.m.--which paired with wild males at 5:00 am in Sheet Harbour, N.S.. I also took a wild female in Sheet Harbour on June 16th. Males from first batch (3) eclosed on 18th. I obtained mating (5:20 am) on 19th in Montague, P.E.I. and have another female out on June 22. She mated with a wild male around 5:30 am in Valleyfield woodlot site on June 25. Four males emerged on 20th. I also took a wild female at lights in Montague in late June.

To my great surprise I took a wild female at lights in Pennfield, New Brunswick, on July 14. I did not expect to see columbia flying so late in the season.

1997 Season Summary

Derek Bridgehouse and I took nine male columbia at three different light sources in Sheet Harbour, Nova Scotia, over a two night period the last weekend in June. Males were not at lights when we retired at 1:30 am. We picked them up around 4:30 am when we rechecked lights, hoping for females. It now appears (based on literature, correspondence and 1998 findings) if females are going to be taken at lights, they will be there before midnight. Males, however, do not report at lights until just before dawn (probably 3:00-4:30 a.m.).

1998 Season Summary

May 16: I removed ten columbia from refrigerator storage today as we are having an extremely early spring.

One male eclosed in the evening of June 8. Three males eclosed within fifteen minutes of each other during the evening of June 9. Three more males eclosed on June 10.

Early male emergence pattern is typical of this species.

One female eclosed on June 13 and another on June 14. One female cocoon contained a dead, completely formed, soft adult.

In Montague, P.E.I., I took one female at Chapel shed light around 11:00 p.m. on June 17. I took females at Stewart and Beck's, the Lobster Shanty, and Holland College lights between 11:00 pm and midnight on June 18.

A female columbia was taken at a light in S. H., N. S., around 10:45 p.m. on June 13.

1998 New Brunswick light trap sampling reports one columbia taken on June 16.

I obtained a mating with a caged female (eclosed June 13) on June 18 at Hyne's trucking. Most unmated female saturniidae will begin ovapositing within three nights after eclosion. This unmated female went five nights without ovapositing before mating. Perhaps this is typical of this "short-windowed" species.

Ova from all females (three taken at lights were nearly spent and yielded 25-40 ova each) began emerging approx. 14-16 days after deposition.

Reports from Quebec indicate their columbia were about two weeks earlier than ours.

All larvae were put out on larch in remay sleeves at Joe Brown's, Dan Bears, and Dave Lundrigan's. Cocoons were taken 6-7 weeks after larvae had emerged. Larvae from later egg depositions seemed to take longer to develop as nights start getting quite cool here after first weekend in August. I saved twenty cocoons (12 females and 8 males by size) for breeding stock. Cocoons were saved, a few from each of the different females, to ensure genetic diversity.

1999 Season Summary

Note: Larch grows extremely rapidly and two 15 foot trees which I had capped in a fairly tautsleeve (1998) grew through the top of the sleeve. I did not have this problem with smaller capped trees or with horizontal branches. Six to eight fourth instar larvae in a six foot sleeve is a good number.

Cocoons of this species are usually available in the fall. Click onLIVESTOCK to see a price list.

You can click on the HOME PAGE which includes some rearing articles, and navigate from there, or you can click on any of the species listed below for quicker access to files with pictures and information.


Actias luna

Antheraea polyphemus

Hyalophora cecropia

Hyalophora columbia