Orange Tip (Early Stages)

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MikeOxon
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Re: Orange Tip (Early Stages)

Postby MikeOxon » Fri Apr 27, 2012 4:07 pm

I know many others have already said it - but this sequence really is superb! Each photo is excellent in its own right.

Congratulations,
Mike

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Vince Massimo
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Re: Orange Tip (Early Stages)

Postby Vince Massimo » Fri Apr 27, 2012 4:23 pm

Thanks for all the positive comments everyone :D

Roger: - I have now extended the sequence to show some of the wing inflation process. Hope you like it :) .

Dean: - I work with a Canon Powershot G10, which is not an SLR. It does have the advantage over some other compact cameras in that it allows the built-in flash to operate while on macro setting. I believe that anybody with the time, interest and inclination can produce similar images and sequences after some experience. All of my shots are hand-held and, unless it is a special one-off sequence, I usually take a dozen of each individual a day and save the best ones.

All of my male Orange Tips have now hatched, the final one being an absolute beauty...........

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Orange Tip male (Reared) - Caterham, Surrey 26-April-2012


This now leaves 6 females to monitor. Another project is also in the course of being finalised and I should be posting a detailed report in the next few weeks.

Vince

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Vince Massimo
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Re: Orange Tip (Early Stages)

Postby Vince Massimo » Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:27 pm

I have yet to see an Orange-tip in the wild in the 2013 season and records will show that they are running approximately one month later than usual. However, the pupae that I have been over-wintering have now started to hatch and they still never cease to amaze.

Whilst many aspects of their development have already been covered in this topic, a new opportunity was to present itself in July last year when I found a green pupa. Up until that time I had only encountered the brown form of this stage, so I was keen to document its development as it approached hatching. The pupa was found on a Garlic Mustard stem in my garden and was not derived from one of numerous larvae that I usually rescue from roadside verges.

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Orange-tip pupa (green form) in context on Garlic mustard - Caterham, Surrey 6-March-2013

You can still see signs of old feeding damage on the seedpod above the pupa.
It stayed green all winter, but started to darken towards the end of March 2013.

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Orange-tip pupa (green form) 6-March-2013

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Orange-tip pupa 28-March-2013

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Orange-tip pupa 15-April-2013

Almost overnight on 21st April it suddenly paled. This was a sure sign that it would be a female.

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Orange-tip pupa (3 days before hatching) 22-April-2013

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Orange-tip pupa (2 days before hatching) 23-April-2013


In the next few days the wing colours started to show more strongly, but then paled again in the hours just before hatching.

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Orange-tip pupa (1 day before hatching) 24-April-2013

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Orange-tip pupa (3 hours later) 24 April-2013

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Orange-tip pupa (5 hours before hatching) 25 April-2013

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Orange-tip pupa (30 minutes before hatching) 25-April-2013

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Orange-tip female hatching 25-April-2013

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Orange-tip female (newly hatched) 25-April-2013


She was released into the garden a few hours later and flew away strongly.
I had 10 pupae in all, which have so far produced 5 males and 2 females. To date all have been released and there are 3 females yet to hatch.

Vince

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marmari
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Re: Orange Tip (Early Stages)

Postby marmari » Fri Apr 26, 2013 2:21 pm

Isn't all that fantastic! :D

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Mark Colvin
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Re: Orange Tip (Early Stages)

Postby Mark Colvin » Fri Apr 26, 2013 2:39 pm

Great work Vince.

Highly inspirational and a pleasure to read as always ... :) :) :)

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David M
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Re: Orange Tip (Early Stages)

Postby David M » Fri Apr 26, 2013 3:57 pm

Your attention to detail is beyond commendable, Vince.

Excellent stuff once again.

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Vince Massimo
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Re: Orange Tip (Early Stages)

Postby Vince Massimo » Mon Apr 29, 2013 1:33 pm

Thanks guys :D

Some of the 5 Orange Tip males which I released have stayed in the close vicinity and continue to patrol adjacent gardens when the sun comes out. I have also observed both of the females I released a few days ago being mated, but they were in a neighbouring garden, so did not get any photos. All tend to roost in the same area overnight or when when the temperature drops during the day. Two females which hatched yesterday were released today, whilst the final one should emerge shortly.

The release point is a clump of Garlic Mustard which self-seeded from last years plants in a sheltered spot of the garden. I wait for an approaching break in the cloud and put them on the plant. When the sun breaks through, each will gradually open their wings and bask for a few moments before flying off.

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Orange Tip female (release 8) - Caterham, Surrey 29-April-2013

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Orange Tip female (release 9) - Caterham, Surrey 29-April-2013

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Orange Tip female (release 9) - Caterham, Surrey 29-April-2013

I only got photos of one of the 5 males. This one appears to have some extra black markings on the wingtips, but I don't know if it counts as an aberration.

IMG_4665M-01G.jpg
Orange Tip male (release 5) - Caterham, Surrey 27-April-2013


I am working on two other species at the moment :wink:

Vince


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