It seems fitting that Part 10 be the last of the series. :)
In Part 9, I left off saying that we had three caterpillars in their chrysalises, and still lots of caterpillars outside. Since then, the weather here got cold, and it started dropping below freezing at night. My Mom and I brought the caterpillars into the garage, where it's warmer, and they stayed there for a few weeks. Tuesday of this week, we took them all up to a park that has a butterfly house because we knew we couldn't keep them in our garage forever. The butterfly house was warm and humid, with lots of milkweed for them to eat. The butterfly keeper was very kind to let us bring them there, and we're hoping to go visit them soon. ;)
As for our three chrysalises, one of them started to get some black splotches on it. I don't think that one will ever open up. We're not sure what happened- but we are sad to see it.
*UPDATE* That chrysalis surprised us all and did become a butterfly! We were all very excited about it. :) We took him to the same place we took his buddies, and they seem to be enjoying life at the butterfly house. :)
As for the other two, (turned "green" Nov. 18) they both emerged yesterday! I was very excited. :) We had started to wonder if they would ever emerge, because the usual amount of time for them is two weeks. Obviously, it was more like five weeks, so they must have something that tells them it's too cold out to emerge. :)
We decided that instead of releasing them into the wild (knowing that there will be lots of cool weather and not many flowers), we will take them up to the same park where we took the caterpillars. I'm sure they will live a happy life there, and they will be great for little kids to see when they walk in there. :)
Enough talk- now for some pictures.
|The chrysalis starts to thin out, and you can see the butterfly's wings|
|This is my favorite picture of a chrysalis. :)|
|Now it's very thin, the butterfly is almost ready to emerge.|
|When they first emerge, their wings are all crinkled up from being packed in there so long.|
|They start to pump fluid into the wings.|
|And now they're a perfect set of wings! ;)|
I'd love to hear what you all have to think about the Monarch life cycle! I hope you've enjoyed reading about it!