Thursday, September 14, 2006

Migrating Monarchs

I took this picture of a monarch caterpillar on my son's hand a couple of weeks ago - it looks like it was getting ready to pupate, since it was getting into a J shape. I didn't see where the chrysalis ended up, though, and according to this chart on Monarchwatch.org, "Toxy" (as my son named him, because he's toxic) may have already emerged and set off for Mexico. We haven't seen any monarchs in the last week or so, although it's been raining so much we haven't been out much.

Next year, we're definitely going to do some tagging. Check out the cool monarch tagging pictures at Burning Silo, which I just ran across when I discovered the third Festival of the Trees.

I love all the wildlife we've had this year associated with the swamp milkweed (which you see going to seed in my last post). If any locals want some seeds to start next spring (or a whole plant to transplant when they come again next spring) give me an e-mail. I'll mail you an envelope of milkweed fluff & seeds, or you can bring your trowel and dig yourself a shoot. We're going to be transplanting a lot of them next year anyway, and they are tough, these Asclepias incarnata plants.

2 comments:

Jennifer (ponderosa) said...

As a child I lived in Coloma, MI. We had milkweed pods in our backyard. They were SO much fun! Sticky, if I remember right.

We also had sycamore trees, the stems of which taste like lemon. Do you have those?

Ah deciduous trees : )

Sandy said...

I've seen a couple of big old sycamores in town - but we don't have any in our neighborhood, or I'd drag the kids out right now to go and taste a stem. I can just see the homeowner's looks as we stand in their front yard on a quiet Sunday morning, chewing thoughtfully on sticks filched off their tree. :-)

I can't imagine living somewhere without deciduous trees, though we're struggling with the cost of removing the giant dead elm tree in our back yard (wiped out by Dutch elm disease last year). There won't be much raking back there, anyway.