From Larva to Chrysalis

4 Sep

There have been several discrete cohorts of Monarch larvae this late summer probably as a result of different batches of eggs laid.

One group was on four smallish Milkweed plants up back right near where the wood splitting machinery is set up.  I eventually saw six larvae there and moved the last one down to a similar wild milkweed in my garden since oil was dripping on and coating the leaves.

This is one of the first I saw:

One group of at least two were on a tall wild milkweed on the northwest side of the garden.

One group of 5-6 have been on the light-leaved cultivated Asclepias with lighter yellow flowers.  And there are at least two newly hatched small larvae on the red-flowered darker leaved variety of same next door to them.  Both varieties are on the north eastern side of the vegetable garden.

What I have not seen, though, is a chrysalis.  The larvae get fat and large–and then disappear.  Hunting for chrysalises has been futile.  My friend Sue has lots in her insect cage inside from hand reared larvae. But I have been hoping to see one in the wild.

Last night as I was hurriedly removing dry bean pods from plants because the sky got dark and the wind picked up all of a sudden, putting an end to my leisurely bean stripping in situ,  I thankfully saw this in time to not damage it:

How it came to be on a bean plant which was being dried on a bench thirty feet from the garden is interesting to contemplate.  The larva was attached.  So I hung the plant up in the back room and took this photo last night.

This morning it looked the same.  I wondered if maybe I had somehow injured it and if it were dead.  But about 9AM when I checked again, it looked like this:

This photo is magnified for effect.  Fascinating, eh?

And another 45 minutes later:

Complete!  Voila!

Tell me there is no evidence for personal transformation.  Or of one life leading to another.  Evidence refutes you.

One Response to “From Larva to Chrysalis”

  1. SandySays1 6 September 2010 at 5:55 PM #

    Nature keeps giving us evidence and man keeps trying to ignore it. Your example is a fantastic one. Mother N transforms aquatic larve like hellgramites to flys, tadpoles to toads, some fish and frogs change sex as they mature, and on, and on…. Only man with his large dose of arrogance choses to disregard the proof.

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