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Whittington, Melissa
Education Director

Nature Center Locker

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Butterfly Life Cycle

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Monarch butterflies love to flit from flower to flower in the nature center butterfly bed.  In September the monarch eggs show up on the milkweed plants that grow in the butterfly bed. After a couple of weeks the eggs begin to move as the caterpillar prepares to emerge. The tiny (< 1 cm) caterpillar immediately begins to eat and eat and eat, then grow and grow and grow. Within a weeks time the caterpillar has grown about 3.5 cm - they eat more plants per body weight than an elephant ( that's incredible). Two weeks later the chrysalis appears under a leaf.  Three weeks after creating his beautiful chrysalis he begins to emerge as an adult Monarch ---- WOW! How amazing is that!