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containers for larvae photo

1) Another view of mistletoe cuttings in tuna cans with floral foam. 2) For very small caterpillars that I want to observe closely or keep track of I sometimes insert cuttings into floral vials filled with water and place the assembly and the larvae into a small plastic container lined with a paper towel. 3) My basic rearing cage for small larvae is a plastic vivarium that can be purchased from a pet store. It has a ventilated snap-on top so I put a piece of dacron chiffon under the top to prevent escape of the larvae and intrusion by parasitic wasps. 4) This is a larger vivarium with more cuttings. When the hairstreak larvae are getting toward their last instar I put a few sheets of black paper napkin or black tissue paper at the bottom of the container. In the wild this species seeks out dark places like crevices in tree bark or under leaf litter. The crumpled black paper provides an inviting place for them to pupate. See next photo.

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