It was carefully bred by a butterfly farm selecting butterflies with a little blue iridescence in the front wing edge. Over a number of generations in a year it became all blue. I know I can do this so be prepared to see and buy my own version in a little over a year. I have seen hints of purple and green iridescence in my own live stock. So there is a hint of what is to come.
I think I can make a colored Buckeye faster than the farm did. I have worked on my Big Eyes through selective breeding for less than a year and soon in a few weeks I will have the first ones available for sale. When breeding say for an all green butterfly you have to keep only the very best with the most and brightest green. This means culling many and keeping only a select few for breeding. Then next generation do the same. Then to prevent deformities I do breed to wild every two inbred generations. This will set me back a little. I do indeed plan to work on as many colors as the butterflies provide me with. So in a year or two may be I will have a nice set of colored Buckeyes for sale.
Very nice, created through selective breeding congrats! It reminds me of the Golden Birdwing.
btw: good luck bluemoth! seems you know what you're doing;) I have had some negative results with breeding, but mostly as a result of inbreeding. We'd love to see some pictures when you come up with nice morphs...
Last Edit: Sept 10, 2011 21:05:17 GMT -8 by bichos
It seems therefore that a taste for collecting beetles is some indication of future success in life!--Charles Darwin
Very interesting. I'd like to see how this turns out. If I were you, when culling the butterflies with undesirable colour, I would pin each one and place them in a time line. Even though these are the unwanted ones of that generation, obviously even those would show a continuous change towards what you are selecting for. (I stole this idea from Darwin with his birds).
I know someone who is attempting something similar but not with butterflies. Its interesting with inbreeding, how you breed back to the wild every so often. It all amuses me.
Hay Jamesd good point. I will keep a few pinned from each generation to show the time line of change in the blue color. In fact some collectors like to have time lines of such things. I have some very nice butterflies to start with. A couple of them show a lot of blue in the fount wings in the leading edge of the postbasal part. More blue should appear in the next generation toward inner part of wing by median area. I expect 4 to 5 generations from now some butterflies may have some blue in rear wings. Breeding back to wild every so often is impotent to prevent deformities like crumpled wings or messed up antenna. These deformities can totally ruin my hole stock. Inbreeding is what makes pattern or color changes happen.
Post by edithellensmith on Oct 3, 2011 17:01:09 GMT -8
Hey, this is Edith, who breeds the Blue Buckeyes in Florida. I've only been working on this line for one year, not since 2005. I pulled out old photos of Buckeyes with blue to use on the webpage that is linked in the first post. It is amazing how quickly you can bring out the blue. Now we have green and purple also. You can keep up with the changes on our facebook page too (ShadyOakButterflyFarm) We are beginning to see scales that glitter as well as the metallic colors. We are also seeing some emerge with shiny black backgrounds and shiny brown backgrounds, not the normal brown background. Our favorite butterfly is the simple as-found-in-the-field Buckeye but the selective breeding we're doing is sure fun and turning out some fantastic specimens.
Glad to hear from you Edith. I found your tweet page not long agoe and saw a mention that it only took a year for you to make Blue Buckeyes and that they get better with each generation. Out of my stock I got the begenings of blue and green Buckeyes. Also working on three Spotted Buckeyes(Triples) and Blue eyed Buckeyes. That is realy neat all the difforent color forms you are getting. How did you get the purple Buckeyes? Just wondering who I should breed together of my stock to get purple. I have only seen very slight hint of purple in wing tips of some of my stock when in the sun light. Would you like to do some trading of stock in the future? You can PM me.
Post by edithellensmith on Oct 11, 2011 17:01:43 GMT -8
The purples just began to show up. Also metallic black and metallic brown. I'm separating the three colors now (blue, green, purple) before they pair to see what happens. These two emerged either today or yesterday, I'm not sure which day.
Post by edithellensmith on Oct 11, 2011 17:05:08 GMT -8
It would be wonderful to see photos of the three eye spots. I've been pairing big eyes together but had to quit for a while so I'll have to start it over again. We raise so many butterflies that keeping too many projects going during busy season is not a wise idea. We'll see how it goes through the winter and hope to have time to keep the eye spots going in the spring too. If you're interested in these, please send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me your state. We have USDA permits to ship to certain states but can't ship to the other states. We do charge for them, though, the same as normal Buckeyes.
Post by edithellensmith on Oct 11, 2011 17:08:20 GMT -8
(Sorry for triplicate posts. I just realized that I didn't answer a question.) Bluemoth, if it were me, I'd pair only those with purple in the wings and each generation keep them separate where they can't pair with anything else and see if the purple gets stronger. Be sure to keep quite a few going if you can. If you limit genetics too much, you'll lose everything you've gained. I haven't added in wild genetics in the last year but we keep so many going that we can go for longer without adding in more. We do have a separate line of Buckeyes that aren't inbred. We add wild ones to them twice a year. We've been raising Buckeyes for 11 years now. (I hope I answered all the questions. If I didn't, yell!)