We know the amount light something received affects many things. Plants are one example that changes where it lives and how much it will grow within its light environments. However, I just learned that it can have an influence on some insect critters’ color.

Indeed a caterpillar colors between molts can be influenced by its light environment. (David Wagner) A dark Black Swallowtail!
Here was a lighter one preparing to pupate into a chrysalis!
And its chrysalis was green. “The light environment of the prepupa influences the color of the chrysalis.” (David Wagner)

Here a Black Swallowtail caterpillar had decided to pupate on our house’s siding.

Previously I had read that the Black Swallowtail’s chrysalis was greenish in the spring and summer. In the fall they were supposed to be brown. Furthermore I had observed this in the past. And this was the one (the same cat above) which led me to investigate this further. It was brownish! The date it pupated was June 5th.
White eggs on the bottom of a leaf with true bugs hatching.

Apparently Stink Bugs can control color of their eggs. If they lay their eggs on the top of the leaf then the eggs are dark. Thus the eggs get more protection from UV light. See the article below. These are on top of the Western Horse Nettle (Solanum dimidiatum) leaf.

Totally amazing! Indeed there is so much to learn. And thanks Dave!

Stinkbugs are color conscious when it comes to their eggs

The Origin of Butterflies: A 100 Million-Year-Old Mystery Unraveled

Understanding How Spiders Make Their Silk Could Help Us Treat Alzheimer’s

Keep looking!

The more you know, the more you see and the more you see, the more you know.


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