Monday, June 6, 2011

Animal of the Week: Monarch Butterfly

Monarch butterflies are just coming out in this area. They are large orange butterflies with black markings. The one pictured above is a male - you can see the two spots on his hind wings.

For some basic biology on butterflies, check out a previous post here.
Monarch butterflies have a long distance migration where they spend the winter in Mexico.

Milkweed is the Monarch's host plant - that means that as caterpillars, they eat only milkweed. This makes them taste bitter which is why they have such bright coloration. This bright coloration tells birds - Don't eat me, I taste bad!

There will be lots more butterfly fun all week - so keep coming back!

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