Thursday, 9 July 2009


We have a little friend on the kitchen window at the moment. Like so many others last year this large white caterpillar decided to climb up the house wall and window to form a chrysalis on the upper sill of the window. This one fell a couple of times and eventually gave up, instead forming a chrysalis right in the middle of the window.

June 20th:

July 3rd:

Fingers crossed that we'll be lucky enough to catch it emerging in a month or so.


ADRIAN said...

You are a veritable mine of information, I, in my ignorance thought they took a year! Word verification is 'spingra' They are connecting well with the posts today, Assuming it does spin the cocoon.

Helen Edwards said...

Hi Adrian, welcome to the blog.

The length of time that large white butterflies spend as a chrysalis depends on when the egg was laid. If it's laid late in the summer then they stay in chrysalis form all winter. If, as with this one, the egg was laid early in the year (around May) then they stay in the chrysalis only for a few weeks and emerge as an adult later in the summer. The small white and green-veined white behave in a similar manner.

janerc said...

I had a comma caterpillar making a chrysalis on 13.06.09 and emerging on 24.06.09. Keep a close watch on it!

holdingmoments said...

Hope you manage to capture the moment of emergence. That would make some very interesting pictures.

Louise said...

Do you know which type of butterfly this will become, my son found one of these and is eager to know what is inside! I can't seem to find any information about identifying crysalis's.

Helen said...

Hi Louise. This is the chrysalis of the large white butterfly, also known as the cabbage white - it's very common in the uk. Pictures of some of the more common chrysalises can be found in most identification guides to butterflies, but I'm afraid I don't know of a good book for the rarer ones.