birth of a butterfly
we’ve read that the monarch butterflies born this time of year will probably migrate to California, hibernate there for the winter, and awaken to lay their eggs in the spring before they die. Relatively speaking, they will have a long life compared with the monarchs born in the spring and summer months.
our hearts leaped for joy as the butterfly garden witnessed the metamorphosis of about 2 dozen butterflies, each breaking out of its chrysalis over the past 3 days.
this little photo essay follows one insect who attached her chrysalis to our door frame. The chrysalis itself is transparent and the insect’s wings begin to form within the final few days. Coloration is fully visible within the last 24 hours.
Just after this 10am photo, the chrysalis began to split apart from the bottom. By the time I got back up on the ladder with my camera, she was on her way.
The insects immediately turn and position themselves so their wings are pointed downward. They need to redistribute the fluid from their bodies into their wings. Gravity helps.
4 – 8 minutes later the insect’s wings have elongated.
The butterfly siblings all emerge within 60 minutes of each other. Here are a few of the brothers and sisters on their very first day as an adult insect.
Aren’t they beautiful? This was a pretty spectacular event. A first for me to experience the amazement.
I hope their great-grandchildren return to our garden to find a safe haven for a new generation.
God speed lovely butterflies!