Saturday, August 31, 2019

From Milkweed to Monarch

Backyards and gardens are a science experiment we create daily.

Well I don't, but my husband does--he's the one in the family with the green thumb! His latest addition that's taken off this year was nurturing and adding to the milkweed he planted last year. It didn't do much last year, but this year it really took off, and we got a chance to witness the transition from milkweed to monarchs.

We were struck by the many chunky caterpillars that nibbled, and grew, then each one aligned him or herself along our fencing to create its own unique, individual chrysalis. At one time we had at least 8 chrysalis lined up on our fence--one crawling all the way to the protective corner quite a ways down. We also hoped and assumed that some of the caterpillars crawled to our neighbor's side of the fence. These are all pictures from our backyard, creating a montage of the lifecycle. My favorite is seeing the caterpillar curl into chrysalis formation.

Upon sharing it on Facebook, former Eagle Cove colleague Lindsay Moore shared her video of one of her classroom caterpillars transforming into a chrysalis and gave me permission to share it here. With the help of iMovie, I created the full video shown here. Watching that caterpillar, it's amazing what can happen in 5 minutes.

What also was neat, was while in Illinois, visiting my mom, we found these two signs during our local zoo visit.

For more butterfly inspiration, read Orion Magazine's Biking with Butterflies by Sara Dykman.

Video from; photo collage from my backyard, sign photos taken at Scovill Zoo.

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