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The Life Cycle of the Butterfly and Migration Pattern

The Life Cycle of the Butterfly and Migration Pattern

Author: Rocio Velasquez

LS1.B: Grade 1 Growth and Development of Organisms

Adult plants and animals can have young. In many kinds of animals, parents and the offspring themselves engage in behaviors that help the offspring to survive.

CCS RI.8 Grade 3-Integration of knowledge and Ideas

Describe the logical connection between particular sentences and paragraphs in a text (e.g., comparison, cause/effect, first/second/ third in a sequence). 

Grade: 2

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Stages of the Monarch Butterly Life Cycle

The life cycle of the butterfly is divided into 4 stages.

Stage 1:The Egg-The egg is laid by an adult butterfly onto a leaf.

Stage 2: The Larva-Larva is what hatches from the egg and is called a caterpillar.

Stage 3: The Chrysalis-The caterpillar will position itself for the next stage and make a shell for itself called a chrysalis, also known as a pupa. 

Stage 4: The Butterfly-After the caterpillar goes through metamorphosis in the chrysalis, a butterfly will emerge from the  pupa.

Stage 1

Stage 1: Once a monarch butterfly lays an egg, it will take 3 to 5 days for it to hatch.



Stage 2

Stage 2: The egg hatches into a larva, also known as a caterpillar. From this point on, until it goes into the next stage, the caterpillar will eat and grow. Eggs are usually hatched on the type of plant that they will eat. The monarch butterfly eats from the Milkweed plant. The caterpillar will also go through a growing process called molting. That is when the caterpillar is growing so fast it has to shed its skin to continue growing.

Stage 3

Stage 3: Transformation time! The caterpillar positions itself and begins to form a chrysalis or a pupa to begin the metamorphosis process. A caterpillar can stay in this process anywhere from a few weeks to a year. It all depends on the time of year and type of weather.



Stage 4

Stage 4: The transformation is complete, and the caterpillar emerges as a butterfly. The chrysalis goes from opaque to transparent. The butterfly has to let the blood start pumping into her extremities, like her legs, wings,  and antenna.  



Let's Review the Life Cycle

Two puppets explain the life cycle of the butterfly.

Migration Patterns

Monarchs do not survive well in the winter, so they migrate to places where the weather is much warmer. Some travel South to Mexico and others travel West to Mexico. Monarch butterflies travel in clusters so that when they roost at night they can help each other keep warm. 

Once the weather begins to warm up in the North again, the Monarchs make their trip back. They are the only other animal, besides the birds that make a dual migration.




Migration Pattern