Just the back yard!? Nah, I want the front and side yards landscaped in natives too.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Emerging Evidence

After our two monarch caterpillar got progressively bigger, they disappeared. Because the Argiope aurantia spiders had webs near the butterfly weed, I was just a little concerned that they had become lunch. Some of the good people at my favorite forum (Wildlife Gardeners) told me that it was unlikely as they become more and more toxic the more milkweed they ingest. I was told that they had most likely crawled off to pupate--thanks tineckbone.

I half-heartedly looked for the chrysalises, but soon gave up. Just yesterday, I stumbled across what I quickly realized was the remains of the chrysalis that had enclosed one of the caterpillars. I missed the green gem with the golden dots of the chrysalis, but easily recognized the remains of it. So far, I've only seen the monarch's chrysalis in photographs, but I hope to spot them next year.

I'm thrilled to have spotted this evidence that the caterpillar survived and emerged as an adult monarch butterfly. As bridget1964 says, "If you plant it, they will come." I'm happy to say they did, and I plan to add more milkweeds to the property. Here's hoping to have a lot more butterflies and caterpillars next year.


Raeanne L said...

These are some really cool pictures! Nice job!

David said...

Thanks, Raeanne. They are kind of cool...maybe next year I'll get some of the emerald green crysalis. :)