Did you know that in certain areas, monarch butterflies are just itching to come visit you? That’s right! If you plant milkweed in your garden, the monarch butterfly (sometimes known as the “milkweed butterfly”) will be more likely to come flocking to you!
Today, we thought it’d be fun to talk about the beautiful monarch butterfly. But first, watch this short video showing the transformation of caterpillar to butterfly:
10 Fun Facts About Monarch Butterflies:
1. Monarchs can travel up to 8,000 km per year!
2. The male monarch butterfly is distinguishable from females by the black-colored scent glands on each hind wing.
3. The monarch butterfly is totally dependent on milkweed during its larval stage.
4. Milkweed contains a chemical that tastes awful. Birds know this, and associate that smell to monarchs. This works just fine for the monarch, which would otherwise be defenseless.
5. The monarch butterfly caterpillar sheds its skin four times within two weeks of hatching.
6. When the monarch butterfly caterpillar is two weeks old, it weighs 3,000 times as much as it did when it was born.
7. The Monarch’s wingspan ranges from 8.9–10.2 cm (3½–4 in.).
8. After the monarch butterfly emerges from the pupa, it must pump fluid into its wings and wait for them to harden before it can fly.
9. It is believed that the monarch uses the magnetic field of the earth and the position of the sun to find the town of Angangueo Mexico, where it spends the winter avoiding the Canadian cold.
10. Monarch butterflies are one of the few insects capable of making trans-Atlantic crossings.
Butterflies are fascinating insects! If you’d like to learn more about these neat creatures, visit some of these great resources:butterflies, butterfly, kids, monarch, outdoors