Butterfly Metamorphosis

pril 28 – Our caterpillars arrived. We got them from Insectlore. They come in their own box with moisture and food, along with detailed instructions on what to do next. It’s a pretty cool way for children to understand the process by actually seeing the metamorphosis. For the next 7-10 days these guys will eat and grow before changing into Chrysalides.

Nadia wanted to know what kind of butterflies these are. They are (will grow up to be) Painted ladies. She then requested a face painting like the painted lady. Here is her demo of how butterflies spend their day. Skipping from flower to flower sipping nectar.

Day 3 – The caterpillars are eating and growing. Looks like they are slowly moving towards the top of the container. Soon they should spin silk and build a chrysalis…so far so good.  May 5th – The caterpillars are now making webs. They have climbed to the top of the cup. They are hanging in a “J” shape under the lid. In next 2 days, they should become chrysalides….which is pretty cool! The caterpillar parts will liquefy and re-arrange to become the cells, tissues and organs of a butterfly. We will be moving them tomorrow into their new habitat and can get some better photographs then. Nadia desperately wants to take them out of the jar and allow them to sleep in her bed…well maybe another time kiddo!

May 6 – We now have 5 fully formed chrysalides. Removed them from the container and moved to a net habitat. Now it should be another 7 days or so before the butterflies emerge.

May 13 – Huge surprise when we got home today. Butterflies have emerged. Their wings are still not strong to fly. They should be ready to fly in 2-3 days.

May 15 – Today we bid farewell to our house guests…our butterflies are now ready to leave their habitat. One of them stayed behind for a while…it’s like it did not want to leave. Eventually we had to put it on some flowers in our backyard and it finally took off. I hope everyone enjoyed this experience as much as we did. You can visit insectlore.com if you are interested in purchasing kits. It’s a fun activity for adults and children. Nadia’s pretty sure they will come visit us soon…we shall see.



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