Current EGGS and LARVAE

If you are a beginner and need information on rearing from small caterpillars, or hatching out pupae, please order the All Colour Paperback BUTTERFLIES. INSTRUCTIONS ARE NOT SENT WITH EACH SPECIES, you need to acquire basic skills and this book is a simple way of doing so.

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Oleander Hawk nerii 15 eggs or 10 larvae, according to availability
Availability: Early 2024


Oleander Hawk Daphnis nerii 

Because the egg stage is only a few days, they cannot be supplied outside Britain.

One of the finest of all Hawkmoths. The larvae are very fast growing indeed and they consume a lot of food. It is often possible to have the larvae from hatching to pupation in little more than a month.

Larvae thrive on Privet and can be reared on Periwinkle Vinca, or Honeysuckle Lonicera. Suitable for winter or summer rearing. Oleander Nerium is a natural foodplant but it is often tough and leathery, so the alternives are usually better than Oleander.

 

£16.95
Convolvulous Hawk convolvuli 10 larvae
Availability: Autumn


Convolvulous Hawkmoth Herse convolvuli 

The moths have started breeding. Larvae will follow next month.  Not available every year: these are very special! 

Huge caterpillars: fascinating to rear.  The pupa has a curious proboscis, like a jug handle. Feeds at dusk, Tobacco plants, Petunia, Lillies and Phlox.

Larval Foodplants: Convolvulus, Field Bindweed, Hedge Bindweed, some Morning Glories.

Best reared in Plastic Rearing Containers: see the advice at the heading of that section of the WWB website. Keep at about 25 degrees C. The paper lining and food must be changed EVERY day. Food needs to be very fresh at all times. When larger the larvae may need this change twice a day, due to their productivity!

Larvae pupate in deep compost. Amazing pupae with jug-handle exterior proboscis case!. The pupae may be held cool until next season or incubated to produce moths in a month or two.

£17.95 £14.95
Clifden Nonpareil (Blue Underwing) Catocala fraxini 15 Eggs
Availability: NOW


Clifden Nonpareil (Blue Underwing) Catocala fraxini

The largest underwing, spectacular blue. Store eggs refrigerated until May.

This species is now almost extinct in Britain. We are offering European stock of this fine moth, the largest of all Underwings and remarkable for its BLUE hindwings. The young larvae are immensely active and care must be taken when transferring them to fooplant on hatching, because they can tangle themselves up if you try to move more than one at a time! Feed on Aspen and other Poplars. The larvae are the largest of this genus and very satisfying to rear. Moths emerge in late summer, laying eggs that overwinter.

£14.95
Lappet Moth quercifolia 10 larvae
Availability: NOW


Lappet Moth Gastropacha quercifolia  

We don't get Lappets every year. This is quite special.

A magnificent species with fascinating, very large furry caterpillars that blend into their surroundings, and a moth that looks just like a bunch of leaves. Very easy to rear, sleeved on growing Blackthorn,
Plum, Hawthorn or Apple.

The larvae grow to become a good size for hibernation, when they settle down the twigs and remain still for the winter.

Sleeve the larvae for the winter, using a double sleeve which protects better than single, during winter gales and helps prevent predators. In spring they awake and feed up rapidly, becoming giant and pupating in June. The cocoon is thin and papery. Inside the pupa is fragile and should not be disturbed. The moth is something that will amaze anyone seeing it for the first time!

 

£16.95
Vapourer Moth antiqua 10 larvae.
Availability: Summer 2024


Vapourer Moth Orgyia antiqua

 Eggs are laid by the wingless female in a batch on the cocoon, where they pass the winter and hatch in spring. 

Very interesting both for its moth and its very attractive and colourful caterpillar. Winter eggs are supplied for storage in the cool until spring. The larvae normally hatch in May/June or later, and feed on a wide variety of trees, which include Hawthorn, Willows and Sallows, most fruit trees, Hazel, Rose, Lime and Oak. The larvae are beautifully patterned and coloured, and decorated by prominent shaving brush-like tufts. The cocoon is spun amongst the foodplant.

The male moth is delicate, chestnut brown, with prominent feathered antennae, which are used to detect the wingless female, who emerges from the cocoon and rests on it, calling for a male. She lays her egg batch all over the cocoon where the eggs remain through the winter ready to start off the next generation.

 

£12.95
Vapourer Moth antiqua eggs.
Availability: NOW


Vapourer Moth Orgyia antiqua

 Eggs are laid by the wingless female in a batch on the cocoon, where they pass the winter and hatch in spring. 

Very interesting both for its moth and its very attractive and colourful caterpillar. Winter eggs are supplied for storage in the cool until spring. The larvae normally hatch in May/June or later, and feed on a wide variety of trees, which include Hawthorn, Willows and Sallows, most fruit trees, Hazel, Rose, Lime and Oak. The larvae are beautifully patterned and coloured, and decorated by prominent shaving brush-like tufts. The cocoon is spun amongst the foodplant.

The male moth is delicate, chestnut brown, with prominent feathered antennae, which are used to detect the wingless female, who emerges from the cocoon and rests on it, calling for a male. She lays her egg batch all over the cocoon where the eggs remain through the winter ready to start off the next generation.

 

Belted Beauty Lycia zonaria a large egg batch
Availability: Spring 2023


The Belted Beauty Lycia zonaria

Eggs and larvae have never been offered before. Emerald green eggs are laid in large egg batches. A whole batch of not less than 50 eggs is amazing value, and provides enough larvae to experiment with different foodplants and rearing methods. We advocate using growing foodplant when possible, and sleeving the whole pot of food.

In Britain this species is very rare indeed, and protected. Found in only about 3 localities on sandy nutrient-poor grassland or dunes. Very scarce in Holland, where it occurs in similar coastal areas. Our stock comes from central Europe, where it is sometimes found on dry limestone slopes where the vegetation is sparse. 

The larvae feed on a variety of plants and you may be amongst those who discover new foodplants. 

Eggs are laid in batches particularly on grasses where they can be tucked into pockets and hollow stems. The larvae feed on a variety of vegetation - possibly almost anything that is growing amongst the grasses. They appear to like a variety of foodplants and are recorded as feeding on Dandelion, Dock, Cow Parsley, Clovers, Kidney Vetch, Bird’s-foot Trefoil, Yarrow, Creeping Willows and Sallows, Hawthorn, Coltsfoot, Plantains, Burnet Rose and even Flag Iris. The larva, starting black with prominent white spots, becomes medium green, well camouflaged colour, but with a prominent lemon yellow lateral stripe. This is a Geometer - looper caterpillar.

This is one of the few moths that has a wingless female. The female rests sometimes prominently where they more easily attract males, which fly by day and by night. 

The pupa is formed only a little below the ground surface, where it spends the winter. Store winter pupae in a closed plastic box, very cool or refrigerated. To avoid desiccation don't leave in open air. In the emerging cage, keep moist at all times. See the Pupae Nest on this website. Emergence starts in the very early spring.

This is an opportunity not to be missed, to breed a very rare species and see its life history at first hand.

 

£19.95
Giant Atlas Moth Attacus atlas 15 eggs
Availability: Jan/Feb


Giant Atlas Moth Attacus atlas 

 

One of the largest of all moth species in the world!  The larvae feed well on Privet, at any time of the year, and might accept Portuguese Laurel.  They require very clean conditions, always with fresh food. Alternative recorded foodplants include Willows, Lilac, Apple, Plum, Ash, Cherry and Tree of Heaven Ailanthus.  Atlas larvae like to browse on several foodplants and settle for the one or more that they like.

The larvae like warmth 25 -30 degrees C and humid jungle conditions, which are best achieved in a tank or plastic container, rather than a netting cage. Given these conditions the larvae are not difficult to rear, and spin cocoons in about 8 weeks from hatching.

 

£15.95
Epiphora mythimnia 15 eggs
Availability: NOW


Epiphora mythimnia Africa 

A fine African species, seldom obtained. The moth has deeply hooked wings and markings not unlike those of Atlas, but the colouring is a unique combination of burgundy, white and yellow, with clear triangular and circular eye-spots. mythimnia is one of the smaller species, and very beautiful.

The larvae have some characteristics in common with those of Attacus, whiteish, with fleshy tubercles.

Reported larval foodplants include evergreen Portuguese Laurel Prunus lusitanica, Ceanothus, Croton (colourful foliage house plant) and Alder Buckthorn Frangula alnus. It's probable that other food plants may be discovered. Evergreen Euphorbia characias (woolfeni) is a newly discovered foodplant.

Eggs are being posted from Europe by our breeder.


 

 

£14.95
Antheraea yamamai 10  Eggs
Availability: NOW


Antheraea yamamai Japan and Central Europe

A rewarding and easy species to rear in spring. The eggs are stored cool for the winter. Bring them into room temperature when the buds open, and the larvae hatch in a couple of weeks or so.

The caterpillar, a close relative of Antheraea pernyi, the Chinese Oak Silkmoth, grows very large. It has a green face and more interestingly, it spins a wonderful  egg-shaped cocoon of BRIGHT GREEN silk.  Very easy to rear on Oak. The larvae sometime take leaves of other trees and shrubs. Hawthorn is a early substitute for Oak. The pupa is spun in summer and does not emerge until well into autumn. Eggs laid in summer, are dormant through winter; they can be refrigerated, and hatch when the buds open in spring.

The female moth may be a bright canary yellow, with large ringed eye-spots, one in the centre of each wing. Colouring, especially in the male, is rather varied. Both sexes are illustrated with quite different colour forms.

 


 


 

£15.95
Bullseye Moth Automeris io eggs SPECIAL PRICES!
Availability: Summer 2024


Bullseye Moth Automeris io North America 

Eggs and Larvae of the Bullseye Moth are not available every year. This small silkmoth has a number of interesting characteristics.

The male and female are distinctly different colours – both have the enormous eye markings on the hindwings which are exposed when the moth is disturbed.

The larvae are covered by branched spines – don’t touch them – they sting like a nettle! They are gregarious until the larvae are quite large, changing colour at each skin change.

For pairing, keep the moths in a cage the size of the Pyjama Mini Cage. Fertile eggs develop a black dot which is the micropyle, through which the embryo breathes. A useful indicator of fertility, not present in most other species.

The larvae are polyphagous, ie they will accept a wide variety of foodplants, which include such trees as Oak, Lime, Willow, Hazel, Bramble, Apple, Hawthorn and more.

Saturnia jonasii, Far East Russia 10 eggs
Availability: NOW


Saturnia jonasii  Far East Russia 10 eggs

Keep eggs refrigerated until late March, or when the first buds open.

The last time this species was offered by WWB was over 40 years ago!  The young larvae are most decorative. Recorded foodplants include Ornamental Crab Apple Malus, Hawthorn, Sallow, Osier, Sometimes Privet and undoubtedly a number of other trees and shrubs.

Final instar larvae are covered in short bristles and the caterpillar is lime green all over.

The moths emerge in autumn. Their eggs hatch in the following spring. 

£17.95