Wednesday, September 24, 2008

King and Queen

Continuing the butterfly saga (see post immediately below), these are a sequence of pictures put together from two different Monarchs that Judi photographed emerging from their chrysalises. The Monarch's emergence is quite different from the Black Swallowtail's. The Monarch is folded in half inside the chrysalis, which splits from the bottom. The Monarch literally unfolds its body, and is left hanging onto the bottom of the chrysalis, with the wings flapped out to either side:

monarchemerging1 monarchemerging2 monarchemerging3 monarchemerging4 monarchemerging5 monarchemerging6

The butterfly emerges with wings folded, and has to hang upside-down while he or she pumps fluid from the abdomen into the wings to inflate them:

monarchwithwingsstillfolded2 monarchwithwingsstillfolded3

This one fell (to no harm), and had to be picked up and returned to his or her perch. The newly-emerged wings have the texture and consistency of finest, shimmering silk -- they are incredible. Here's this specimen on Judi's knee and in her hand, before being transported to resume hanging wings-down:





Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?