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  • Writer's pictureadrianne

That Didn’t Take Long

You know what this post is about, right?

Early this morning, Bill's chrysalis was looking pretty funky. I hadn't expected any activity today because both he & Ted were 2-4 days behind Rufus in making their respective chrysalis. What the heck do I know? Not much, apparently.

However, when I saw the look of Bill's chrysalis, I strongly suspected today would be his day. We hoped to watch him emerge, but he snuck out when we weren't looking at about 11:00am. Hello Bill, welcome back!

He pretty quickly made his way over to Ted's chrysalis, and that's where he hung out. And when I say "hung out", I mean Bill literally hung from Ted's chrysalis.

For hours, he stayed there. It was a rainy day, and I knew we couldn't release Bill at the four hour mark. However, the rain was supposed to be gone by 4:00, and I hoped Ted would emerge in time to have four hours of wing drying time and be released today. (I read if a butterfly can't be released at least an hour before sunset, he should be kept overnight.) We checked frequently, determined to see Ted emerge, but there was no movement. To complicate things, the predicted time for the end of the rain kept getting pushed back, and I wondered if Bill would get released today.

Fret, fret,'s what I do over all these little animal babies. At 2:15, we checked again, and there was Bill, still hanging on Ted's house. We very nearly missed it--did you catch it? Over in the corner behind Bill was Ted, very newly emerged with wings still folded. He looked like a little moth.

Hello Ted. Welcome back. It took a little bit of time and a small amount of fretting on my part because I thought he was deformed, but Ted's wings did unfold.

And Bill finally left Ted's (now empty) chrysalis, his job coaxing Ted out complete.

When the rain moved out a bit after 5:00, I had a phone consultation with my butterfly expert, Bonnie, about releasing today. Bill was obviously ready, and Ted was moving around too and flapping his wings some, so Bonnie gave the green light for a 6:00-ish release.

The time arrived, and we went out to the flower garden. First up, photos, of course.

Then oh-so carefully...

I carefully placed Ted on a Lantana flower and tried to place Bill there as well.

Bill had waited long enough, seven hours since emerging, and it was time for him to fly. Off he went! Goodbye Bill! Enjoy your excellent adventure!

Ted, on the other hand, stuck around for a little while and allowed me some photo opportunity. (Okay, probably he was drying and strengthening his wings some more, but it could have been for photos. Whatever the reason, I'm appreciative for the time.)

Happy as I am for the ease and availability of my cell phone for photos, thrilled I am for the photos my Big-Girl Camera allows me to get.

Isn't Ted gorgeous?

Ted hung out for about 30 minutes, and then he too took off for a most excellent adventure.

I'd like to give a special thanks to the following, without whom this wouldn't have been possible:

Bill, Ted, & Rufus for coming in to my life by way of my parsley plant.

Bonnie for being available & giving me all the on-point advice and information I needed.

Jamie, especially Jamie, for accepting a bin of caterpillars/chrysalis's/butterflies living on our dining room table for 3+ weeks and for taking as much delight as me in watching these small creatures through their transformation.

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1 Comment

Bonnie Loewenstein
Bonnie Loewenstein
Aug 31, 2023

I love watching them move through their stages of life. So happy to have been there for you and their next big adventure. ❤️🦋❤️

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