C. janais life history
Crimson Patch (Chlosyne janais) Life History

9-16-08, eggs found just as caterpillars begin to emerge

9-17-08, one-day-old caterpillars

9-20-08, typical early-instar coloration

9-22-08, on the move



Mature  caterpillar from an earlier brood, 10-2-08

10-3-08, beginning to pupate

10-4-08, pupa

Fresh Crimson Patch, 10-10-08

I was delighted to come across some Crimson Patch eggs just as they were eclosing. Unfortunately, I was not able to complete a study with those caterpillars, so I have appended photos of an older one I found about the same time that I found the eggs.

The most commonly listed host plants for Crimson Patch is Flame Acanthus (Anisacanthus wrightii) and Carlowrightia parviflora, and the butterflies regularly use these plants in my yard. In addition, I have found an occasional older caterpillar eating Mexican Plume (Justicia fulvicoma) or Shrimp Plant (Justicia brandegeana). Since I have found neither small nor numerous caterpillars on the latter plants, I suspect that the older caterpillars moved to these hosts from the Acanthus or Carlowrightia.

Below: facial view of a caterpillar munching on a Flame Acanthus flower.

Crimson Patch Page