First Monarch Butterfly Emerging Of The Year

Although our swamp milkweed did not do well this year and between aphids and some sort of (i believe) fungus it dies off early and didn’t support many caterpillars butterflies visited every day multiple times a day to lay eggs. In July we could see that something was eating the leaves but never spotted caterpillars until a bit later. Finally, we spotted this one that has obviously been around for a while because it’s pretty big. large monach butterfly caterpillar on milkweed plant

A couple of days later we found a few more. One of those days we spotted a chrysalis hidden in the milkweed plant. The green is hard to spot in the plants sometimes. We kept looking in the weird places like we found then last year.

Green monarch butterfly chrysalis on milkweed plant with dew drops on it

We kept watching for it to start changing but as I said before it was hard to see the green matching the green leaves and stem of the swamp milkweed plant. One morning I went out to see if I could find it and spotted it completely cleared up and ready to emerge.

cleared up and ready to enclose monarch butterfly chrysalis

I came in the house and showed Molly the picture and said at least we know we’ll have one new butterfly this year. I sat down and drank some coffee and checked the news and stuff like that thinking there would be time. Probably less than an hour later I went outside to see if it’s doing anything and spotted the new butterfly. A couple of hours later it had flown away. Monarch butterfly drying its wings about an hour after emerging