In the last three days we've had seven monarchs emerge from their chrysalis. Our last two will likely emerge tomorrow.
You can see our make-shift monarch holding box above. Most of the jars that held the caterpillars were covered with the mesh and even when we put a likely looking stick in for them to attach to, they preferred to get as high as they could and attach to the mesh. But we didn't think there was adequate room for them to emerge in the jars, so we made do with lathe and duct tape. Above you can see the three monarchs that emerged yesterday, plus some of the empty cases from the day before, and the two pupa that are still green. And plenty of duct tape.
After hanging and strengthening her wings, this female made her way to the top side of the lathe and is pumping her wings, getting ready to take off for the bushes across the yard. She doesn't know the porch screen will thwart this goal.
But with a little help from a friend, she gets a ride outside and after resting with the sun on her wings for a few moments, she takes off on a wavering flight across the yard to the far bushes.
Above is a male (you can tell by the spots on the lower wings), resting on the alyssum that borders my herb bed. He soon moved to the curly allium pictured below and hid there for a time.
The second male took off across the yard and then circled back, enjoying the sunshine on the hummingbird feeder.
Bon voyage, butterflies!
"Instructions for living a life:
Tell about it."
Mary Oliver in "Sometimes"
I've taken on a prayer practice of looking for the moments of light in each day, whether actual or metaphorical, and then writing or posting photos of what I find.