/> a mother's heart » Blog Archive » we have caterpillars!

Out of our 4 eggs, we have 3 caterpillars. One egg has yet to hatch, and I think there are two possibilities: 1) it was laid later than the others (like just before I got the eggs and leaves) or 2) it’s a dud. I know there are ‘duds’ in the realm of chicken, goose, and duck eggs, but I haven’t a clue if it applies to insect eggs or not. Guess we’ll find out, because we’re not doing anything to disrupt it and I check on it daily to see if it’s hatched.

This is the view we have from the top of the jar with the lid off–what I do several times per day to check on the little guys. I don’t pull out the leaves with frequency…about every other day to see where they are and how they’re growing and eating. And for Brendan’s interest, how they’re pooping. ๐Ÿ˜› I never got in to the “poo curiosity stage,” so maybe it’s a boy-thing. But he has a morbid fascination looking at different kinds of animal poo–maybe we’ve let him watch Mike Rowe on “Dirty Jobs” too much! ๐Ÿ˜‰

To the right, you’ll see a dime and the little caterpillar–for the sake of comparison between the egg photos and these guys now that they’re two days post-hatch. Still incredibly tiny, but you can see some of the striping on them which will be so prominent as they grow and shed skin.

This is a different leaf and caterpillar…he was the second to hatch (the one above was the 3rd hatchling), and you can see the hole in the milkweed leaf as well as little black dots, which are the aforementioned caterpillar poo. ๐Ÿ˜›

To the right is (arguably) the best photo I’ve taken so far of these little guys–this was the first hatchling to emerge, and he is necessarily larger than his companions. The white substance on the leaf is the “milk” from the milkweed, and if you break a milkweed leaf, you’ll see this sticky stuff just like you would if you pop a dandelion. I’ve not tasted the milkweed “milk” and have no intention of so-doing (if it’s poisonous to birds and animals, I’m not taking any chances!), but as a kid I did manage to get dandelion “milk” in my mouth and :::blech::: *that* stuff tasted horrible. I guess probably not so horrible if you’re an insect that eats it, but pretty darned nasty to human tastebuds. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

I’ll take more photos in two days…stay tuned! Same Bat-time, same Bat-channel!.

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  • Karen(Chevy)

    Great shots! Wait till they get to be big, the poo will amaze your little one LOL.