When I went out this morning to see if the little monarch caterpillar was still there, I didn't see it at first and was disappointed that something had gotten it before I could get tulle over the milkweed plant. However, I was determined to search the plant and was delighted when I finally found not one, but two caterpillars. The one my daughter had spied last night was hiding on the underside of a leaf and there was a smaller one under another leaf on a different stalk. The sun was quite bright and it was difficult to see (should have grabbed my sunglasses, but time was short, so I squinted), but it appeared that there were some eggs on a few other leaves. As usual, the camera on the cell phone in my pocket was the closest available photographic device.
This isn't the greatest shot (click to enlarge), but I was in a hurry to get the tulle over the milkweed before any marauding wasps or other critters could get to the caterpillars. I had to get ready for work, so my time was limited.
Oops! In my hurry to get things finished and get ready for work, I cut the top off the milkweed in this shot. You get the idea. There is another milkweed plant in the flowerbed on the other side of the porch, but I didn't really have time to look closely for caterpillars. I decided it would be better to leave that one uncovered for any monarchs that might come by looking for a snack. This is the first year I've planted milkweed and I'm not sure how many caterpillars my limited supply can sustain, but perhaps I can save a few from predators so that they can mature and make the trip down to Mexico. I don't think I have anything on the agenda in the morning, so I hope to have more time to look for caterpillars and eggs before going to work.
I'd like to give my daughter a big thank you for spotting that caterpillar last night. You got some good eyes, Girlie Girl!
FROM THE PRINCESS ...
4 years ago