Raising Monarchs, 2019|
From Chrysalis to Butterfly
|March 29, 2020|
The big moment in the life of a chrysalis (or its observer) occurs when the metamorphosis is complete and a monarch emerges. As in much everything else, patience is important, since it takes an average of 8 to 12 days for the transformation to happen.
On the morning of day 9, the chrysalis below appears perfectly ordinary.
|By the evening of day 9, something new develops: The chrysalis begins to become transparent, and a portion of a monarch wing is visible.|
|On the morning of day 10, the chrysalis appears black. Actually, its transparency has increased.|
|The "black" phase lasts a half-hour or less. The time difference between the photo above and the one below is 7 minutes. And, yes, in the photo below the bottom of the chrysalis opens and the monarch struggles to emerge.|
|This particular monarch took longer than the others to work free of the now obviously transparent shell of its chrysalis.|
|The monarch flips out of its chrysalis shell and hangs upside-down.|
|After the monarch is assured of its grip, the next phase begins.|
|Fluid from the oversized body of the monarch is pumped into and expands its wings.|
|The monarch body decreases and its wings increase.|
|The wings take about 10 minutes to achieve their full size.|
|After the pumping is finished, the monarch hangs about while its wings dry and assume their proper shape.|
I took the above photo on the day after the monarch came out of its chrysalis, although the monarch's wings were already in good shape the previous evening.
The next step is releasing the adult monarch.
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