Monday, August 15, 2011

Monarch Caterpillars

Our nineteenth annual Bug Fest is soon approaching, so last week Miranda and I walked around looking for caterpillars for the monarch butterfly station.

We soon hit a small patch of milkweed, only four plants, that was covered with tiny caterpillars. We found about 20 or so of the minute creatures. The caterpillars were only a few days old. To get an idea of how small they are when they first hatch, I have a paper clip in the photo for reference. Please click on the photo to enlarge it on your screen. The caterpillar is to the right of the C-shaped mark on the leaf.

Here I have cropped the photo so you can see it a little better. Notice the teeny stripes on the body. Soooo cute!!!

These little guys are growing like gangbusters, so I will have to post more baby pictures in the future!

On the same note, Naturalist Linda Gilbert from Geauga Park District, up near Cleveland, OH, posted this amazing video of a monarch caterpillar hatching from an egg. The egg is about the size of the tip of a ballpoint pen.  Thank you, Linda for taking the time to film this miraculous event through a microscope and for allowing me to share this video!



prateek_sethi said...

amazing pics....
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