We had the WONDERFUL opportunity to observe two of our Painted Lady Butterflies emerge from their chrysalis' right before our very eyes! Last Thursday, as we were preparing to begin our day, we noticed the shell of one of the chrysalis' begin to split near the bottom (head end). We watched as the butterfly reached out with its legs and grasped the outside of the chrysalis. The head appeared, and then the abdomen and wings were pulled free of the chrysalis shell. We observed as the fresh new butterfly clung to the chrysalis shell with its soft, crumpled wings hanging down.
Eventually, the butterfly pumped fluid into the veins of the wings, expanding them to their fully extended shape. During this time the butterfly ejected a splat of red liquid. We learned that this liquid is a waste fluid that the butterfly unloads as it prepares for its new life.
The children were fascinated as they observed this amazing transformation, as reflected in their fantastic Science Notebook entries that day!