Hatherleigh Community Primary School Caring about learning and learning to care

See our caterpillars!

Usually at this time of year we have caterpillars in our classroom so that we can learn and experience the butterfly life cycle. I have caterpillars at home this year so will update their progress on this page.

Day 1. The caterpillars are very small in their pot. They are busy eating their brown food.

Day 9. The caterpillars are growing! How many can you count in the pot?

Day 13. The caterpillars are really growing now.


What are the little brown balls in the pot?

Those little balls are 'frass' or caterpillar poo!  It means the caterpillars are eating and growing!


Why are the caterpillars spinning silky webbing?

It is a good sign if there is webbing in the caterpillar pot.  The webbing protects the caterpillars from many dangers.  Caterpillars use the webbing to stick to their host plants, as the wind could easily blow them off leaves.  Their true front legs have hooks which they use to walk on the silk like a ladder.

Day 16. Wow! Look how big the caterpillars are now! What do you think will happen next?

Day 22: The caterpillars are now making their way up to the top of the pot where they will turn into chrysalides. It looks like one of the caterpillars has turned into a chrysalis but now fallen down into the bottom of the pot!

Day 24: Three of the caterpillars have now turned into chrysalides.

Day 29- I have now moved the 3 chrysalides into the hatching net in preparation for them turning into butterflies!

Day 39: At last! We have butterflies! Three butterflies have emerged from the chrysalides. There is just one chrysalis left. I am now feeding the butterflies and in a few days they will be ready to be released.

There are now four butterflies! They have been released into my garden!