Saturday, July 11, 2020

Monarch part 2

Remember the monarch?

He/she emerged this morning. It was so cool to watch! I'm so excited because it's the only monarch I've seen this year. But it was a successful rearing from the caterpillar I sent you last week until now. I'll do the release this evening once it's completely furled and the wings are dry.

Blog hiatus update: I'm almost caught up on requested fulls. Thanks to all of you who've helped me with blog content while I get the backlog under control.  


Lennon Faris said...

Beautiful! what a lovely creature to see on a Saturday morning.

Claire Bobrow said...

What a gorgeous butterfly! We don't have Monarchs in our garden, but are growing milkweed with fingers crossed. The orange butterflies we do see are Red Admirals and Orange Fritillaries. They seem to like salvia and purple toad flax. Thank you for sharing!

Steve Forti said...

My kids hatch butterflies every year. This year, 5 of the 6 made it. The one who didn't was kinda tragic. It tried to emerge from its chrysalis too early, and couldn't get all the way out. Spazzed out. I tried to do some surgery and help open it the rest of the way, to no avail. When the second one emerged, it tried to help the first. Every day or so, it would spazz some more. But never successfully escaped. When we released the butterflies, that one didn't make it.

On a completely unrelated and self-serving note, anyone else have a complete novel they're working through revisions and looking to trade beta feedback? Email me?

nightsmusic said...

Claire, that monarch is the only one I've seen this year. It's been a bad year for them.

Steve, I'm so sorry the kids had to see that and that the butterfly didn't survive. :( While it's an example of 'life', if you ever have that happen again, detach the chrysalis and put it in the freezer. It's humane and the butterfly won't suffer.

I couldn't release this one the evening he emerged. We had terrible storms and while they can fly in a storm, releasing them in one isn't good. By the time the rain stopped, it was too late at night and he wouldn't be able to find a good spot for the night so the predators wouldn't get him. I released him the next morning and while he'd hung quietly where you see him for most of the time after eclosing, the minute I got the doorwall open, he exploded into a flurry of activity. I had to wait for him to calm down and gently grabbed him by the wings. My intention was to put him on the flowers of the milkweed and get some pictures but his little legs were going a mile a minute and when I set him on the milkweed, he was GONE! So much for pictures! But he'd had a chance for his wings to strengthen because I'd delayed his release. If I'd been able to let him go that first night, he wouldn't have been so enthusiastic.

Beth Carpenter said...

A happy ending! Thank you, nightmusic, for keeping us up to date. Spread your wings, little butterfly.

Gissel Escudero said...

How lovely! BTW, there's a very easy way to tell a male from a female monarch butterfly: males have this little black bump in their rear wings (it's an odor gland). You can see it when the wings are open.

AJ Blythe said...

We have Monarchs in Oz. They were introduced in the late 1800s. The monarchs don't eat our native milkweeds, just the weed milkweeds (which were also introduced from the US).

Glad your butterfly was in such good hands, nightsmusic.