We had a playdate last week with some kids from Porter's preschool and Deanna (Julianna's mom) brought their monarch caterpillars they were raising. She had a simple little screened in cage that she kept them in and said it was easy to find the larva (caterpillars) on the milkweed. I guess I'd never tried looking! So, I decided we were going to start raising monarchs.
According to the Monarch Guide,
In the wild, only about two to five caterpillars that hatch from the hundreds of eggs a mama Monarch lays actually make it to adulthood.Interesting. So, we are going to become Monarch "foster parents" LOL! Raising butterflies is so easy! If you're interested in raising monarchs, a few websites with great information are:
The Monarch Guide
Learn About Monarchs
And here is what milkweed looks like. You can find it nearly anywhere... I see a ton of it on the side of the roads/highways.
Right now we have 12 larvae in our cage. The largest Porter has named Combine. Like... a combine harvester. Yes, seriously.
Here is Combine on August 5th:
(The largest caterpillar up towards the top of the picture/leaf)
And here is Combine on August 8th:
Amazing how fast they grow!
I think I am just as excited, maybe even more, that the boys with this project. Its so fun!