Becoming a beautiful butterfly

The title’s not a metaphor; this post actually is about becoming a beautiful butterfly.

These photos were taken during my break in April, when I had the luck* to visit an area with butterflies in all three stages of metamorphosis, from caterpillar to chrysalis to butterfly. I would have loved to see some moving from one stage to another, but it seems that will have to wait until next year. As it was, it was fascinating to be able to compare the three stages and see some of the details, like the gorgeous golden spots on the chrysalises.

The butterflies in the photos are Monarchs. They’re really common in South Australia, but no less stunning for their familiarity. The flat leaved plant they’re eating is milkweed, an introduced species that’s poisonous to a lot of local wildlife, making it a great hideout for the butterflies. While you can’t see it in the photos, the chrysalises are all underneath milkweed plants.

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*A big part of that luck was being lucky enough to have a Mum who thought this was interesting enough to share with her daughter. Thanks!

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