I have a few photographs to add today.  They may not be the best quality, but that doesn’t matter, as it’s the subject of the photos that’s exciting for me!  I planted milkweed in the yard a couple of years ago, hoping to attract Monarch and other types of butterflies.  I had just about given up, as I hadn’t even seen one near the yard for as long as I’ve been living here, but about a week or so ago I noticed a Monarch fluttering around the neighbourhood.  The day before yesterday it actually landed on my milkweed!  After it was gone I decided to have a look, not expecting anything at all.  To my surprise and delight, there were eggs!

The tiny egg of a Monarch butterfly

I counted several, although I can’t remember the exact number.  I have a total of 5 plants, 2 of which are in their third year and 3 I planted this season. There were multiple eggs on the larger ones and at least 1 on each of the smaller ones.  I thought it couldn’t get any better, but I checked the plants again and discovered there were also caterpillars!  So far I have found 6, ranging from small to tiny.  I wasn’t expecting to find anything at all, therefore I have no clue how quickly they grow or how old they would be. I guess I have to start learning all about their growth cycle.

This little caterpillar is small, but it isn’t the smallest one in my yard by far.  There’s one I can’t even take a photo of, it’s so tiny.
This one is a bit larger, but still tiny and has a long way to go before becoming a butterfly.
If you look closely at this photo you can see a caterpillar chewing on the flower buds.

I’m hoping at least one will survive to adulthood!  Many people raise them indoors to give them a better chance, however I’m going to just let nature take its course and hope for the best.  I’ll document this process as much as I can. I’m hoping to be able to get photos of each stage of development and post them as the metamorphosis continues and completes.  I’m also hoping to take some great reference photos to draw or paint.  Hope you enjoy!

The beautiful Monarch butterfly on the milkweed in my yard.

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