Posted in Conservation, Creatures

Later update on the growing foster family.

While we were doing our evening watering, I startled a Monarch butterfly as I was wending through the one common milkweed patch that is overtaking a path.  Then I watched fascinated as it flitted back to a plant within breathing distance, and laid an egg right in front of me.  No camera on me, but it was over as soon as I realized what was happening anyhoo.

After watering, went back out, and found not just that one, but five more! So the egg count is up to 20.  Most were from a plant that had keeled over.  It’s a newer one, and I think the roots are shallow.  I propped it up with a rock from the pile that will eventually be part of the dry creek bed along the west side of the house.

The second instar started moving about right after I quarantined it on top of a fresh young leaf in the wee little infirmary I threw together.  I almost left it in there, but thought to take a chance because nothing looks wrong with it now.  I think I found it during a transition, and now that it rested, it’s fine.  The color even looks a bit brighter.  I hope I don’t regret it, but time will tell.

So I guess I really should wait to do counts from now on until after evening watering is done, as that’s usually our last garden time for the day.

With this heat, a likely eclose by midweek.
You can already see the wing pattern.

Current Count:

  • 1 chrysalis
  • 4 third instar
  • 1 second instar
  • 1 first instar
  • 20 eggs

Care to share thoughts on this?