Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Insect Lore Painted Lady Butterfly Project

We had to do it again.
It was THAT good.

When I posted (one of my very first blog posts!) Raising Painted Lady Butterflies, I detailed our first experiment with these marvelous creatures.
Wanna watch someone get totally psyched about science? You've gotta nab one of these Insect Lore Butterfly Gardens to blow some minds. 

You're totally getting invested, too. 
Know now that you'll be checking up on these little buggers. 
During both of our Painted Lady experiences, one of the caterpillars was still forming its chrysalis when it was knocked down by another caterpillar. 

For safe transfer into the butterfly habitat, Lee used masking tape to stick onto the end of the chrysalis. Then, using a safety pin through the tape, we pinned it to the netting. 

This method worked during our first batch, and the chrysalis survived the metamorphosis—but sadly, this didn't work the second time around, and the fallen chrysalis was never able to complete the change. 
But after days of hanging and darkening in color, the other chrysalides began their miraculous emergence. 
Here, you can see one of our newborn butterflies, moments after emergence, before its wings fully opened. 

So cool!

As I mentioned in the previous post, although the red, meconium stains are unsightly, they wash off easily with soap and water.

Again, we fed the butterflies sugar water on top of flower petals and watched each dip its proboscis into the mix to feed. 

Alien-looking awesome, people!

We also added a paper plate to the bottom of the enclosure this time for easier clean up. Would recommend this simple step for convenience. 
These lovelies become your little pals. 
But, like they say, when you love something, you have to let it go.
Such an important lesson for wee ones…
the release is the most significant part of the process.
Raising these exquisite creatures has been a thrill every time.
Don't see how a kiddo (or adult) wouldn't fall in love with this educational experience.

The Butterfly Garden would make an amazing gift for any family—sure to create happy memories that will last long after letting go.

Even after the butterflies have fluttered away, the enclosure is completely washable/reusable, so the process can be repeated year after year.

What a brilliant way to bring the magic of science and nature into your home.
Two wings up, Insect Lore!

Know any other amazing science projects for kiddos? Send us new ideas!
XOXO From My Hearth to Yours

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