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Monarch Caterpillar Feeding

Monarch Caterpillar (Danaus plexippus) Feeding - Nom, Nom, Nom
Nom, originally uploaded by eclectic echoes.

At this point (5th instar) the caterpillar eats like crazy! Of course it actually increased in size 33% to 100% day over day every day except the two days that it spent all day resting getting ready for molting.

Length of monarch larva per day

Length (mm) of Monarch (D. plexippus) larva each day post-hatch. Two days (day 8 and day 12) no length measurement was recorded as the larva remained essentially motionless on the side of it


Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Danaidae (Milkweed Butterflies)
Danaus plexippus

9 Responses to “Monarch Caterpillar Feeding”

  1. 1
    Flickr: .Caitlyn:

    Great one–cool little guys!
    This is awesome! Please add your great macro shot to :
    Many Many Macros (Add 1, Comment 2)
    invited with SICI (2008-09-05)

  2. 2
    Flickr: tomato umlaut:

    Lovely. A Monarch, isn’t it?

    You are my winner!
    Please add this photo to

  3. 3
    Flickr: Gazart:

    SO close! Great detail.

  4. 4
    Flickr: Daniel Muniz:

    This great macro was seen in:
    Many Many Macros (Add 1, Comment 2)

  5. 5

    WOW…. ok, this is the best blog EVER. I am SO enjoying seeing this!

  6. 6

    Thanks a lot Kate!!
    My plan is to use this a library of sorts for the organisms I know or learn about as I do it, and provide the same information to Johann and anyone else who wants it!

    Right now it’s focused on the Monarch because of our opportunity there, but I have a few marine organisms to highlight waiting in the wings.

  7. 7
    Flickr: glennisd:

    looks like arashi stripes to me….

  8. 8
    Brine Queen:

    I can’t believe how fast it grew…Only 25 days from egg to butterfly? Love the graph too, talk about a smooth exponential growth curve.

  9. 9

    @Brine Queen: It did grow very fast. Interestingly the monarchs are currently beginning their migration here, so its timing was spot on.

    Next time around I’m hoping we’ll be able to find and raise monarchs from the non-migratory generations as well.

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