Raising Monarchs in Hawaii
by Greg Knudsen
Six in One Day!
I've been raising Monarchs for a few years in Hawaii, where the caterpillars only eat Crown Flower leaves (we don't have milkweed). Sometimes it's hard to find a sufficient supply. This year (2009) I've raised about 60. On January 9, six emerged within minutes of each other (see photo).
I've posted some videos on YouTube you might enjoy. The most popular is "Monarch Butterfly Emerging" here.
Another fun and amazing one is "Caterpillar to Pupa - Gone in 30 Seconds" -- the metamorphosis speeded up more than 6x its actual time here.
Or a slower version, "Caterpillar Pupates - Alien Transformation!" (only 2x speed) here.
You can tell that pupation is about to begin when the caterpillar's antennae become limp and lifeless, and metamorphosis is just moments away when it stretches out of its "J" formation and the body starts pulsating. The whole process is fascinating.
Wow, it's great to hear from a Monarch Butterfly fan in Hawaii! I wonder how the Monarch Butterflies ended up in Hawaii?? Thanks for your youtube links. Check out my video of a monarch butterfly emerging here.