Watching Our Caterpillars Transform Into Chrysalis

Watching our caterpillars transform into chrysalis

It may be no surprise to my readers that we added a few more “pets” to our current animal collection. Although, these pets are rather the temporary sort. I finally made good on my desire to purchase a caterpillar kit this year for our family. If your children are into creepy crawlies, or fascinated by how stuff works they would enjoy this experience as well.

*This post contains affiliate links/ads so I may receive compensation if you choose to click on them and make a purchase. But it won’t change the cost. See Disclosures/Policies.

I purchased the {affiliate link} Caterpillar To Butterfly Kit from Amazon about 3 weeks ago. It arrived at our house about a week later. The kit itself is from a company called NatureGifts.com. They also offer a bunch more options if you visit the website directly. Those include worm farms, ladybug kits, tadpole to frogs, and ant farms, along with a couple more. I wouldn’t mind getting an ant farm to observe also.

Anyway, the box arrived while I was at work. My husband nicely brought it inside, however he did not notice that the box said, “open on arrival” or some such wording. But the caterpillars did not suffer any ill effects that we noticed. They were in a small plastic container, the bottom of which was covered in about a 1/4 inch of “caterpillar food”. There were five caterpillars and they seemed quite tiny.

Watching our caterpillars turn into chrysalis

Once the little critters started eating their food, though, it was impressive how rapidly three of the five grew. In fact, only a week after they arrived, we had a caterpillar transform into a chrysalis! And when the second caterpillar was changing, my five-year old called me over to observe it in mid-transformation. It was neat to see that half the caterpillar was a chrysalis, while the top portion still appeared caterpillar-like. The first three over-achievers made the change around the same time, while the two slower-growing caterpillars changed a few days later. Here’s a picture of the first three in the “j” position they assumed on the lid while they became a chrysalis.

Watching our caterpillars transform into chrysalis

There’s a helpful little brochure that comes with the kit that has instructions on caring for the caterpillars. They are very low-maintenance. Basically watch them eat and then change into chrysalis for the first step! Then 24 hours after all the caterpillars had changed I moved them into the pop-up mesh cage that was supplied for us. Everyone gathered around while I was doing this.

Inside the lid of the container a paper towel had been placed, which is what all the chrysalis were attached to. I had to carefully remove it, and insert the little hook attached to the side of our mesh cage. Since the paper towel wanted to drape over our cocoons, my husband inserted a safety pin at the top to stop it from covering them. And Fyi, if you disturb the caterpillars while they are ensconced in their little cocoons, they will twist and writhe!

Watching our caterpillars transform into chrysalis  Watching our caterpillars transform into chrysalis

We have the little pop-up cage on an end table in the living room where everyone can observe it. Once a day, I use a little spray bottle that came with the kit to mist them with water. Don’t know the reason behind it, just following the instructions! Now we are just waiting for the next stage to occur, when our butterflies will emerge. Supposedly that takes 7-10 days after the caterpillars transform into chrysalis according to our kit instructions.

Our kit also included a little container to put “butterfly food” in. That seems to be basically sugar water. Two sugar packets were included as well. Once they all hatch, I plan to release the butterflies outside. So now we wait till our Painted Lady Butterflies appear!

I hope you’ll join us for an update after that event occurs. Or maybe your family would enjoy their own  {affiliate link} Caterpillar to Butterfly kit!

Watching our caterpillars transform into chrysalis

 

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17 thoughts on “Watching Our Caterpillars Transform Into Chrysalis

  1. Wow! I never knew amazon sells something like this. It must have been so awesome to see the caterpillars turning into those beautiful butterflies!

    1. We have two left to emerge. Hopefully we get to watch them come out of the cocoon, since the first three hatched when we weren’t looking.

  2. Ooh, I’ve always wanted to do this with my kids. Seeing how little they are and how big they got, wow! I think it’d be fun to see them and they’d love it.

    1. Yes, and then one of my kids wanted to save the caterpillar poop!

  3. we stared doing this over 20 years ago with our kids, i think we still have the net somewhere, it was enjoyed every year as a whole family

    1. That’s great! We might have to do it again.

  4. […] Pursue Your Project: Watching Our Caterpillars Transform Into Chrysalis […]

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  10. […] first three. If you would like to hear more about our caterpillar experience you can view that post here. I will probably have another post related to that one but more about the […]

  11. I had no idea that one could buy a thing like this. It`s so interesting. And I bet your kids had a lot of fun 🙂

    1. Interesting for adults too 🙂

  12. I have never had a kit but when one of my son’s was much younger he kept a caterpillar all the way through to when it hatched. He called it Squiggly and assured me he saw him (a moth) for much of the summer after he flew off! What a great way to learn about nature and life cycles and I look forward to seeing a post when they have hatched. A great post to add to #AnimalTales, thank you.

  13. […] But maybe its possible we will see their offspring sometime. And we can get more caterpillars to try this experience again if we want. If you want to hear more about our experience you can visit the first part of this in my last post Watching Our Caterpillars Transform Into Chrysalis. […]

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