Subject: Rescused a curious Mourning Cloak
Location: Seattle, WA
September 7, 2012 5:50 pm
We’ve been having a hot late summer here in Seattle, WA, so we’ve been leaving the back door open a bit during the day. Yesterday afternoon we were startled to see a sizable butterfly flit into the kitchen, then flutter around the ceiling somewhat haphazardly.
Wanting to set it free as soon as possible before it hurt itself or the dog caught wind, we grabbed a mixing bowl and a magazine to trap it and let it back outside. After setting it on the porch rail, the gorgeous creature sat calmly in the bowl for a minute, stretching its wings. I managed to snap a few shots.
Love your site!
Signature: Smiling in Seattle
Dear Smiling in Seattle,
We love your letter and your photo of a gorgeous Mourning Cloak is breathtakingly beautiful. Do you by chance have an elm or willow tree near the kitchen? We can’t help but to wonder if a Spiny Elm Caterpillar, as the larval Mourning Cloak is called, decided to metamorphose into a chrysalis in the eaves of your back porch. That could explain how such a perfect specimen came to be in your home.
You have a kind heart. We love your technique of removing large butterflies from the home and we are tagging your submission with the Bug Humanitarian Award.