I've been keeping a close eye on our house guests since my last post. I had to make several trips round the garden to clip more milkweed for the hungry caterpillars. And in the process I inadvertently brought a few more indoors along with the milkweed!
I ended up with a total of 13.
Thankfully they all pupated without any problems and I no longer had to scour the garden for greenery for they.
Yesterday I noticed one of them was turning color and by the time I took this photo last night, another one was starting to turn color as well.
Over the course of the morning I went into the bathroom to check on them several times, but of course I missed the actual moment of eclosing!
When I went in there just now, this beautiful Monarch was hanging from its empty chrysalis, drying out its wings.
I'll be cutting up some fruit, such as grapes and melon, and putting it on a saucer to feed the butterfly until it's ready to be released. I learned that little trick from a wonderful Facebook group I found -- Monarch and Milkweed Network, Houston, Texas area.
So -- one down, 12 more to go! Happy New Year!!!
Update: A couple of hours after I published this blog, the second butterfly emerged. Here he/she is still unfolding their wings!
Update 2: We have one boy and one girl so far. Here they are having just been introduced to some nice juicy cantaloupe. I hope they like it!
Words and photographs by Jayne Wilson, Jayne's Country Garden.