Subject: Daniel – Monarch Butterfly Eclosion
Location: Hawthorne, CA
February 28, 2013 4:35 pm
First, I’m sorry I haven’t sent photos before now. We lost our first Monarch and it kinda threw me for a loop. It was my first time seeing this wonderful process but I could tell at the beginning that something wasn’t right with him. Another eclosed just behind us just afterwards and flew after a few hours. The first was still around the next morning. When we got back from our weekly grocery shopping, it was on the ground with a back leg folded up underneath itself and dragging its right wing. It has a place of honor in back and I hope to grow a milkweed plant at that very spot. That said, I’ve now seen two more eclose and there are still two left. Maybe another 5-6 days left for them. We spotted six chrysalides total but maybe there are more! The two remaining chrysalides are definitely the last two caterpillars and I will be glad to be able to get out back and clean up the garden once they’ve completed their metamorphosis. So far, one we don’t know the sex of, two males and one female. It’s been difficult to choose which photos to send as this is such a wonderful process. The first of the three is the first butterfly just starting to pump the fluid from his abdomen into the wings. The other two are from a different eclosion. Also, I have a very good friend who was visiting from Oregon last week and she took the three remaining already eclosed chrysalides home with her. She wants to cast them in silver and make jewelry from them. We don’t know if they are too delicate for this, but I’ll get a necklace if they aren’t.
Hope all is well with you and that you have been enjoying our beautiful ”winter” weather.
Signature: Anna Carreon
This wonderful documentation of your Monarch population is greatly appreciated and we are certain our readership will find them helpful. We are sorry to hear that you have not had 100% survival rate.
Your adult male Monarch is surely a comely specimen.
Thanks very much and I’ll try to keep you posted when the last two eclose. It’s been a great experience, one I wish I’d had as a kid.
I think I was a little off on the remaining chrysalides. One looks as though it will eclose today, tomorrow at the latest. The other won’t be far behind, as they pupated within a day of each other.
Update March 1, 2013
I did notice that the site looked not quite right and I couldn’t navigate as before, but waited a few days and then all seemed to be better. We did have eclosion of the fifth Monarch Butterfly about an hour ago. I wasn’t around for it and am not sure why it was not hanging from its chrysalis when I discovered. It’s slowly crawling up the Mexican Milkweed stalk that it pupated on, so I’m keeping a close and protective eye on it. Could have been that a finch or a wasp disturbed it, but I’ll never know. Back out to the back, and thanks for letting me know your site is experiencing problems.
The webmaster is away and there are some technical difficulties preventing new postings and additions from showing live.
Update March 2, 2013
So, our last butterfly eclosed today. It was a boy. Seven known chrysalides: 1 unknown, 2 female, 4 male. Three didn’t make it. I don’t know if that’s a good ratio or not.
I should say seven known. Hopefully there were more that slid out under our radar.