By: Meriel Bradley
Growing up our garden was full of butterflies and bees and I am working to build out my garden from a new home build of nothing but a grassy lawn into a haven for local butterflies, bees, and birds.
The Monarch butterfly is one of the most striking and recognizable species of butterfly, and their lifecycle and long migration from the southern US and Mexico right up into Canada is astounding. It takes up to 4 generations to complete the trip.
The Monarch Butterfly was listed by the Committee for the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada as Endangered in 2016. They can feed on a variety of nectar-rich flowers, but the caterpillars can only feed on Milkweed as its host plant.
This year I planted Milkweed in the garden, the Monarchs arrived and laid eggs and I was lucky enough to watch the caterpillars feed and grow.
I managed to then find and observe a chrysalis to right up to the stunning Monarch Butterfly emerging.
Please enjoy my photographs of this amazing progression from caterpillar to butterfly and consider planting Milkweed in your garden to help support this vulnerable, endangered butterfly.