Pretend you are a tiny little caterpillar! You are growing inside the tiny little white egg your monarch mother laid a few days ago on a delicious milkweed leaf. Your beautiful egg is not round, but oval in shape . . . like a football. Tiny lines can be seen on it from top to bottom. Eggs that are in the shape of circle are another type of insect.
Children playing in fields will be able to find you. If they look closely, they may even be able to see your tiny black head at the top of your eggshell. After three or four days, when the time is exactly right, you begin to chew a hole in the top of your eggshell. Your body has begun to grow and you are feeling very squeezed and cramped! There isn’t very much room left inside that eggshell. How exciting it is when you chew through the top of the shell.
Now you can peek out and see balloons of pink milkweed buds swaying in the warm summer breeze. If you look closely, you can see other eggs that another mother monarch has laid. She will lay hundreds of eggs in a day.
OK…now let’s get back to work. Keep chewing and when the opening is big enough, you can crawl out…push…tug…wiggle…squirm…squeeeeeeeeze your way out! WOW!
PHOTO: Holli Webb Hearn
It’s been an exciting morning, but now it’s time to do what YOU do best…monarch caterpillars are munching machines! They eat all day long! They munch, crunch, munch milkweed. Just look around…milkweed is growing everywhere! What an exciting view…off in the distance another little monarch caterpillar is busy munching milkweed, too. Now it’s YOUR turn to proudly start your day and say
“Hello world”…”I’m a monarch caterpillar!