The Monarch

Starting as an egg, they undergo a radical transformation.  Hatching within a few days, the ravenous caterpillar will eat milkweed leaves over the next ten to fourteen days and then forms a chrysalis.  In the next two weeks, its tissues reorganize and it emerges as a monarch butterfly which could live for another two to five weeks if hatched in the summer.  The final generation which hatches in the fall have a special job which is to migrate and will live up to eight months.  The migration is from the US and Canada to Mexico where they will spend the winter months resting.  This Super Generation will start the journey back to the US and Canada.  By the time they get to Texas, they lay eggs and die, thus starting this incredible cycle again.  These were photographed in Washingtonville NY.

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