Spring Butterfly Excitement!
By Judy Hecomovich
On April 14th, volunteer gardeners were lucky to witness one of nature’s amazing events. We spotted a Monarch butterfly on the milkweed in the Meadow Garden.
“Big deal,” you might say. But it was early for one to be out and about. And the milkweed sprouts were only about 6 inches tall. And there was more . . .
Our interest grew as she stayed and visited one milkweed sprout after another. We felt lucky that she stayed and we got to observe her for so long. And it gets better . . .
Finally we noticed that she was doing something at each sprout – her abdomen touched down on the stem or leaf. At last we realized she had left something there -AN EGG!
Being transparent, each egg was hard to see at first, but with time, each one became more opaque and yellowish. Some of us realized that we had seen eggs last year on the milkweed but mistook them for aphids or other insects. But now we knew they were eggs and not to be disturbed! We were watching the next generation of Monarchs getting started!
You may have missed this amazing event in April, but don’t despair. This particular Monarch was early and there should be many more to come this spring.