Thursday, January 14, 2010

Butterflies

I had an anonymous comment on yesterday's blog:

"where did you get the caterpillars? From your yard? I've never known anyone to do that. Please explain!"

I bought the entire Butterfly Pavilion from InsectLore.

Initially, I had ordered this:



And this came with the enclosure, 2 cups of caterpillars and whatever else was needed. (I can't remember all of it, this was a couple of years ago). However, we did keep the mesh enclosure and they do offer "refill" kits, so you can use the Butterfly Pavilion/Garden again.

Each cup had 5 live caterpillars in it. Once we transferred them to the mesh "garden" area, they transformed into chrysalis' and we watched them hatch a few weeks later. I know I took pictures of the whole deal, but I can't locate them right now. Perhaps we will get a "refill" and do our butterfly experiment again this Spring.

It was lots of fun. Out of the 10 caterpillars, we had 9 butterflies (they're called Painted Lady butterflies, so Powdergirl was close and that is an apple tree!)

We fed them orange slices and sugar water. We only lost one butterfly in the upbringing process, so we released 8 in late April.

I had my Canon Rebel XT on hand with the EF-S 55 - 250 mm IS lens to capture the release. They were slow to leave the mesh habitat, so I was able to get a few really great shots. One butterfly landed on Buddy's shoulder and hung out there a bit.

They seemed reluctant to leave us for a while. But, after a few minutes, they all flew in different directions and I hope onto happy little lives, free as the wind!

17 comments:

  1. We all hoped for the best for those little butterflies, but sadly I bumped into one of them the other day at a bar. Seems he's in a loveless relationship and has several little caterpillars to feed and is working in a small warehouse as a forklift operator for minimum wage. He seemed pretty down and seemed to be drinking an awful lot of beer. If you want I think I have his cell phone number I can give you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Keep on welcoming spring...please! I am so ready for it to be warm and nice again! And, since you talk with the weather gods, I am certain you can make it happen...please hurry!

    ReplyDelete
  3. "Santa" brought that to our house for the kiddo's this year...hopeully we will get the same wonderful results you did come spring!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Gives me a good idea for when my littel guy gets a bit older!

    ReplyDelete
  5. No way! I had no idea stuff like this existed. That's too cool. I don't have kids, but I think I would enjoy something like this for myself. LOL

    ReplyDelete
  6. That reminds me of an excellent book by Carol Lynn Pearson, Consider the Butterfly. The book talks about the coincidences or miracles that appeared that gave guidance to different events in her life.

    ReplyDelete
  7. That is so cool! That is what I intended when i bought the tadpole thing for the nephews, I had no idea that they would live for so long, get so big, and that my sister would have to take care of them! ;)

    ReplyDelete
  8. That is so neat. I may get these for my kids this Spring. Thanks for sharing the details!

    ReplyDelete
  9. My kids were of the ant farm era...lots of ick factor there.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Wow, I think I may have to try this with my kids.

    I know my daughter would love it, but I'm not sure if I could get my son to leave it alone long enough for hatching.

    ReplyDelete
  11. The princess did this last summer. It was so very kewl to see them open up and setting them free.

    ReplyDelete
  12. THank you for responding!! I'm getting one of those!

    ReplyDelete
  13. The mesh enclosure would be a great way to keep appetizers outside bug-free during the Summer. Just a thought. (Most things make me think of food).

    ReplyDelete
  14. This is so cool!! Seriously! I think I'm going to need to order one of these in the spring!

    ReplyDelete
  15. That is great! My son's daycare had one of these. It never occured to me to get one at home!

    ReplyDelete
  16. What a fun thing to do! I think Lady H might have done it in school once, but we've never tried it at home.

    ReplyDelete