The Butterfly Project: Update on Mariposa and Luz

What a day for monarchs! Outside it was stormy and raining all day, but on my porch, it was a day for new beginnings. The last you saw caterpillar Mariposa, she was climbing up to the top of the habitat to go into chrysalis. Since then, both Mariposa and the second, Luz, went into chrysalis. Today they eclosed (emerged)!

Mariposa and Luz both turned out to be males! Both are very big, handsome boys with luxurious wings. How do I know they are male?
Look at the picture. See the small black dots in the lower two quadrants of the wings? Those are his pheromone sacs and it indicates a male.

Now it’s a race to the finish for the dozens of other caterpillars in my four habitats. Several chrysalis and lots of hungry cats of all sizes. This group will likely be the generation of monarchs that will make the long journey to the overwintering grounds high in the mountains of Mexico!

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Mary Alice