Our last monarch butterfly emerged from its chrysalis on Sunday. Before I went to bed on Saturday, the chrysalis had gotten darker so I knew the emergence was imminent. As it was still hanging from the empty pupa casing, I put a stick in the Bug Bottle so it could climb out when it was ready to. Once I saw the open wings, I knew it was indeed a male because of the thin veining and two dots.
It perched on the end of the stick, opening and closing its wings.
It was a bittersweet moment for me. I was happy he got safely to adulthood from his humble egg form in the care of Mike and me; happy to be able to witness this complete metamorphosis firsthand. But I was sad that he was gone, the season was over, and that I have to wait another year go do this again.
I hope he makes it to Mexico and his great-grandchildren make it back to Whitby next summer.