Thursday, July 17, 2014

Life Cycle of a Butterfly {Day 14}

I'm a little surprised that we do not have at least one chrysalis yet.  I'm wondering if being indoors with the air conditioning is making their life cycle take a little longer.  According to the typical timeline, they should all have transformed into a chrysalis by now.

Fifth Instar
ISO 800 ~ 60mm ~ f5.6 ~ 1/40 sec
© Traveling Hearts Photography

I tried having this guy do a lego measurement like the others, but he was not interested in doing anything but eating.  I didn't want to bother him, so we did a side by side comparison of his size.  This is with a 6x1 lego.
Fifth Instar
ISO 320 ~ 60mm ~ f/4.5 ~ 1/320 sec
© Traveling Hearts Photography

G checking out one of the Caterpillars
ISO 800 ~ 60mm ~ f5/6 ~ 1/160 sec
© Traveling Hearts Photography

Yesterday morning we found these three all on top of the same branch.  G said they were having a meeting to decide what they were going to do for the day.  Then he said they decided on "ring around the rosy."  I tend to agree!

The Three Amigos
ISO 800 ~ 60mm ~ f/5.0 ~ 1/50 sec
© Traveling Hearts Photography

I've lost count on the number of eggs on the milkweed outside.  I think at last count we had 7 or 8.  We found the eggs in the strangest spots too... this one was found on top of the milkweed flower.  Usually I see them underneath the leaf.

Monarch Butterfly Egg
ISO 320 ~ 60mm ~ f/13 ~ 1/125 sec
© Traveling Hearts Photography

Judging by the size of these guys, I'd say we'll have some action happening pretty soon.  They start to go through a "wanderlust" phase where they become a little crazy and do some caterpillar gymnastics.  This is right before they march off to find a safe place to "J" and then to begin their final stage as a chrysalis.

Capturing the Moment, 

Corrie <3

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Life Cycle of a Butterfly {Day 12}

Eating, Growing and Moving....

These guys are getting big, fast.

Second Instar
(along with a sneaky aphid)
ISO 400 ~ 60mm ~ f/4.0 ~ 1/60 sec
© Corrie M. Avila

Third or Fourth Instar
ISO 400 ~ 60mm ~ f/4.0 ~ 1/60 sec
© Corrie M. Avila

I wouldn't be surprised if the larger two caterpillars were looking for a safe place to transform by tomorrow or Tuesday.  They are getting big and eating everything in sight!  The smaller caterpillar (the one from the egg I found) seems to be about one instar behind the larger two.

Usually how I find them... 
upside down and eating to their hearts content
ISO 1000 ~ 60mm ~ f/4.0 ~ 1/60 sec
© Corrie M. Avila
(ISO was pumped up high.  It was raining outside and not a lot of window light to work with.)

G and I were out looking at the milkweed outside and found 5 new eggs!  Not sure if the husband will let me bring more indoors... I'll keep you updated :)

Capturing the Moment,

Corrie <3