We had several mini projects/distractions over the summer. Early in August friends of ours were raising Monarch caterpillars – they do this every year – this year it was crazy! They have a friend who also raises them and he was going to be out of time when all the chrysalises were ready to hatch.
So, our crazy friends took over 200, amazingly jewel like, jade and gold chrysalises and hung them all over their mantlepice, bookcases and anything else with an edge.
We were lucky enough to come home with 4. We hung them outside so the butterflies would be able to fly free when they were ready and we waited.
2 days later some began to lose their jade color and they seemed to darken to black until we realized that the shell had actually become clear and the dark color we were seeing was the butterfly itself, ready to emerge. It was all pretty cool.
It was really cool to see them climb out of their little sleeping bags, their wings all crumpled up and short and their bodies short and fat as well, and to watch them slowly pump all the extra fluid from their bodies out into their wings.
They each took about 24 hours from hatching to fluttering away and we had 4 females. The males have a little black spot on their back set of wings and none of ours had that.
Hope you had a couple fluttery moments of excitement and new beginnings this summer! For more info on Monarchs you can go here. Enjoy.