M was delighted when these tiny caterpillars arrived at the door as an early birthday present. They really were itty bitty tiny. Crazy to think that in just a few weeks they would be fully fledged Painted Lady Butterflies. I wanted to record our experience so I took photographs most days. From receiving the caterpillars till they turned in to chrysalis took just 13 days. Unfortunately one little caterpillar (he was definitely the runt of the group) never made it this far.
Our caterpillars came from Insect Lore. They guarantee that at least 3 of the caterpillars will become butterflies. If they don’t they will send you more. We started off with 5 caterpillars, one died before changing into a chrysalis. One chrysalis was on the bottom of the tub and never became a butterfly. Thankfully 3 became butterflies.
It took another 12 days before the first butterfly emerged. We received the caterpillars at the end of August when it was feeling cooler. I am wondering if we’d had them earlier in the year that we’d have had more success, as in 5 butterflies.
Unfortunetly we went on holiday (really not unfortunately!) and we didn’t see the last two butterflies emerge. Our friends looked after our butterflies and we had the pleasure of setting them free when we returned. We loved having these wild creatures resting in our hands before flying away.
There’s no better way to learn about the life cycle of a butterfly than to watch it first hand. It has been a truly delightful experience, one we will definitely be repeating next year.
Have you ever experienced anything like this? I’d love to hear about it. Please comment below.