Monarch Butterfly and Chrysalis

September 08, 2013


Photographer: Bill Schultz MD
Summary Authors: Bill Schultz MD; Jim Foster

The photo above shows a nearly fully formed Monarch butterfly as seen through the wall of its chrysalis shortly before emerging. It was taken from Stonecreek, Ohio on September 22, 2012. The chrysalis is the pupa stage of a butterfly's lifecycle. A Monarch chrysalis is usually attached to a milkweed plant (Asclepias syriaca) -- Monarchs and milkweeds are intimately linked. Soon after this Monarch emerged, it began its extraordinary 2,260 mi (3,640 km) migration to the highlands of central Mexico. It's the great-great descendant of the Monarch that left for Mexico the previous fall.

Photo details: Camera Model: NIKON D300; Focal Length: 105.0mm (35mm equivalent: 157mm); Aperture: f/9.0; Exposure Time: 0.0031 s (1/320); ISO equiv: 800.