Wednesday, June 17, 2015
Searching for Butterfly Eggs
Have you ever watched a caterpillar turn into a chrysalis and then a butterfly?
It's a little bit magical to see the beautiful butterfly that emerges.
Last year we found a monarch butterfly caterpillar for our oldest granddaughter. We put it in a jar with mesh material over the top. Those little critters will chomp through milkweed leaves like crazy! She loved watching the transformation and then we released a beautiful butterfly.
The lifecycle of the monarch butterfly is interesting. You can read about it HERE.
Their habitat is becoming endangered. There is less milkweed and their winter migration areas are also smaller.
I have been looking for some monarch eggs all week. This involves walks and drives around the area looking for milkweed plants...then looking at the underside of leaves for eggs. I am surprised at how few plants I am finding along the road. So far I haven't found an egg or caterpillar.
You can go HERE to see what an egg and caterpillar look like, and the process of metamorphosis. This is a great project for kids. HERE is a link to show you how to raise your own. You don't need to find an egg, just a milkweed and a caterpillar.
I also want to add some milkweed to my yard or garden. But where to get it? I have found one variety of milkweed at a local nursery, but it's different than what grows along the road. I was told that you can root it from cuttings so I am trying that. I have a friend that is going to give me some seeds. She released over a dozen butterflies last year. I recall seeing monarch butterflies fairly often throughout the summer when I was a kid. I hope I can create a habitat for them in my yard. While it is fun to watch a caterpillar in a jar for the kids, I would rather not have them in my house...a little creepy I think. They belong outside in nature.
So...that's what I've been obsessing about this week. How about you?
Hope you are having a good week.
Til next time,