Bateleur College Fauna and Flora
Bateleur College is blessed with an abundance of diverse fauna and flora. There is so much to showcase we have decided to dedicate a whole page to our very special school eco-system.
Bateleur College has borehole water that is used for irrigation, our swimming pool and for the majority of our bathroom facilities. We have municipal water available to our learners for their drinking bottles.
This image is of the magnificent cacti next to our swimming pool that bloom for one day only every December.
Every few years in March, depending on the weather, our Kiepersol trees are invaded by giant caterpillars that eat all of their leaves. The caterpillars then migrate down the trunks and across the grass to find somewhere safe to pupate. They later emerge as magnificent African Emperor moths, although as this happens at night we have never seen them.
More information available at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bunaea_alcinoe
Our Grade 2 class discovered a beautiful new caterpillar this week and we assume a similar one spinning itself into a cocoon. We contacted an expert, Dr Jurate De Prins (Editor of Lepidoptera), to help us identify the moth and this was his kind reply.
"The only way to identify these very beautiful caterpillars is to try to rear them. The biology of most Afrotropical moths is unknown. The identification of species is much easier from the adult moth. By rearing you will contribute to the knowledge of their biology and I am sure you will find a lot of novelty also."
We do not want to disturb the caterpillars or remove them from their natural habitat, so we will allow our imaginations free reign to visualise what they may become.
These photographs were taken at 06h45 in August 2018 from the playground. What a beautiful world we live in.