Meet GEM, our 1st of 40+ Monarch Butterflies in September!
Everyone, meet GEM!
Earlier today, as our team looked on, Gem emerged from her chrysalis (attached to a shelf in our Housekeeping Dept) as a beautiful Monarch Butterfly – isn’t she incredible? (Yes, it’s a she as she does not have the black markings of a male).
We are monitoring 40+ chrysalises but GEM is the first to fly!
On Sept 2, as a caterpillar, she found her way into our Housekeeping Department where she attached to a shelf, ‘metamorphing’ into a chrysalis! We established a protective area and began monitoring her daily.
Sept 12 we noticed her emerald chrysalis tones changing, becoming more translucent, blackish! Not knowing how far away she may be from emerging, we started watching hourly.
Sept 13, today, earlier this morning we witnessed that very magical moment when GEM emerged, freed and fluttering off into the garden – just look at her on our butterfly plant!
Gem is gorgeous!
We’re of course abuzz with delight, it’s been a bumper year for butteries here at the beach, and similarly we are told in Nova Scotia. In early September, among our 5 milkweed plants we noted 83 caterpillars. GEM is the first of 40+ we are monitoring – more than we have ever seen before – here at White Point. As you can imagine, we are watching all of them to see who will emerge next! Learn more about Monarch Butterflies with our friends at Mersey Tobeatic Research Institute, and join their Butterfly Club: https://www.merseytobeatic.ca/butterfly-club.php
Many thanks to our team who captured these pictures along the way, including Shirley, Joanne, Betty, Karen and more!