Karen says: Monarch caterpillars remain in the larva stage for about two weeks. Small caterpillar is into it's 3rd instar. Subsequent instars are distinctly striped in yellow, white, and black, with a pair of black tentacles on both ends of their bodies. First instar. The complete process of the life cycle of the Monarch is fascinating to observe in time-lapse. When the time to pupate comes, the caterpillar undergoes some changes. The stages include, egg, larva, pupa, and adult. YouTuber Allen Miller filmed this video in real time, six minutes that showcase the larva (caterpillar) to pupa (chrysalis) transformation. Just before they pupate, monarch larvae spin a silk mat from which they hang upside down by their last pair of prolegs. Mine has been in that state for about 8 hours. The other type of insect development is called incomplete metamorphosis. The ‘J’ phase of a Monarch caterpillar doesn’t last long, about 10-12 hours depending on the temperature. Soon it will pupate and become a chrysalis. During the larval stage, caterpillars eat nothing but milkweed leaves. Monarch caterpillars go through five instars, or stages between molts. The monarch chrysalis, where the caterpillar undergoes metamorphosis into the winged adult butterfly, is seafoam green with tiny yellow spots along its edge. Educated with simple instructions we were able to view all of the monarch caterpillar stages within a couple of weeks. You will find that your caterpillar will all of a sudden stop eating and seem to be dead or just resting. The Monarch Butterfly Life Cycle. Details from Monarch Lab: . My photo shows it finishing off a leaf that it began eating last night. This is my first year raising Monarch Butterflies. Watch a monarch caterpillar shed its skin to reveal the chrysalis forming within it. Just like any normal butterfly, the Monarch butterfly undergoes the basic stages of the life cycle of a butterfly. Noticing all of the Milkweed (primary caterpillar food – which we’ll get to in a minute), she found 3 monarch caterpillars munching on the leaves. I keep checking to see if it has become a Chrysalis but it is still hanging in the J position. First instar caterpillars are very small and can appear almost translucent or pale green. Habitat Monarch caterpillars eat only milkweed leaves. There are four stages in the life cycle of a butterfly. In the first stage of life as a caterpillar, called the first instar, the larva is 2-6 mm long and does not have its … And here’s how you can too! They will eat and poop and eat and poop and eat and poop until they get to be about 2" long. These stages include the egg stage, larval stage (caterpillar), pupal stage (Monarch chrysalis), and the imago or adult stage. It is now a lot more lively and almost 20mm long. As milkweed is the monarch host plant, it is the only plant that its caterpillars will eat. The entire process is called complete metamorphosis and is one of two ways insects develop from an egg to an adult. I would like to know how long it takes the caterpillar to Chrysalis after it attaches itself into a J. Instars are the different stages Monarch caterpillars pass through, shedding their skin between each stage, until they reach a maturity that allows them to form their chrysalis. The fifth stage is the last one. This caterpillar has notched the stem of the milkweed leaf, a practice called “flagging.” This makes the leaf hang down, protecting the caterpillar somewhat, and reducing the flow of latex, minimizing the chances of this sticky stuff gumming up his mouth. If you want to watch the chrysalis come out of the caterpillar, you need to keep an eye on … thank you for your help.