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The passage from egg to caterpillar to Monarch butterfly
The milkweed is the only source of nourishment for the Monarch butterfly. Without the milkweed plant there would be no Monarchs. The Monarch females lay their eggs on the undersides of the milkweed leaves. Once the eggs hatch, they emerge as tiny caterpillars with eight pair of legs. Within 10 to 14 days the caterpillars eat the leaf of the milkweed and molt 5 times, each time shedding its skin as it increases in size. Leaving the milkweed, the caterpillars or larva transforms into the pupa stage surrounding itself with a jade green chrysalis. Inside the chrysalis another transformation is occurring. The result is a beautiful butterfly, the Monarch.