Thursday, December 3, 2009
The two pupa (pupas? not sure of the plural) that we put in our Bugville Treehouse on Tuesday resulted in two Monarch butterflies today! When we have pupas (?) in there my habit is to check on them first thing in the morning... err, afternoon... as soon as I get up. According to the Monarch Watch website they usually hatch early in the day and sure enough, there they both were. They were pretty still to start out with, letting their wings dry I suppose, but then started fluttering around more later on. I decided on a 4:15 release time as that would allow us to invite some other kids from the neighborhood to see them go, plus it's right after The Middle Child's piano lesson. (The lovely and talented piano teacher also came out to see the release, btw.) This also gave them a good long time in the safety of the habitat to let their wings dry, which is an important consideration. I've seen pictures of butterflies with wing damage due to drying incorrectly and it is a sad thing, let me tell you. I was a little worried it would rain since it was a bit overcast (the website tells you not to release them in the rain) but the weather held. We let them go in the front yard since we have more flowers there but the flowers didn't seem to interest them. One landed on The Youngest, aka The Wild Child, for a brief moment before they took off. They flew up and off into the sky; they were lost to our sight in only a few moments. I think they were reveling in their ability to fly, personally! I mean, they are caterpillars before they go into their chrysalises (OK, I caved and looked it up- the plural of chrysalis is either chrysalises or chrysalides; the plural of pupa is pupae or pupas) then all of a sudden they emerge, and wa-la, they can FLY! I'd revel in it, wouldn't you?