An IPM approach for control of atala (Eumaeus atala) on Florida coonties (Zamia floridana).
Zamiaceae), commonly known as coontie, in both private homes and developments as ornamental foliage.
2] floor area flight cage (Greenhouse Castle Cage, LiveMonarch Foundation, Boca Raton, Florida) and allowed to oviposit freely on whole leaf fronds of their native host plant, coontie (Z.
In the early 1980's it was thought that the pine rocklands in Everglades National Park did not support coontie growth very well and that could explain why the introduced Atala have not persisted (Covell personal communication).
Coontie is North America's only native cycad, which was over-harvested for starch production in the early years of European settlement.
With only 1 or 2 coontie leaves in the flight cage, the females gathered and oviposited together on the leaves without any observed stress or aggression.
A potential advantage to females depositing eggs in larger clusters is that larvae often hatch within a few hours of each other and line up "sardine style" to begin eating simultaneously; doing so likely allows them to break down the tough cuticle of the coontie leaves, thereby skeletonizing the leaves and facilitating feeding.
In addition to re-distributing butterfly populations, coontie is being replanted within historically documented areas, and plants are being redistributed from development sites to safe locations.
Cultivated coontie plants are being used by some landscapers and homeowners as an ornamental (Minno 2002).