J caterpillar but didn\'t make its silk but a round liquid spot instead – help ?

This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  linae 4 years, 5 months ago.

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  • #43568


    Hi I have a caterpillar in J form last night but didnt make its silk to hang from but instead I see a round clear liquid instead – what will happen to this caterpillar if it goes into chrysalis stage – I fear that it will fall off and damage its chrysalis – does anyone know why this is and if it can be rescued to it can go thru its final stages ? This is my first season raising Monarchs – love it – have released almost 40 and still have a few chrysalis left. I have also a few eggs that have already hatched that I have brought the swan plant inside to keep them safe as they grow – the caterpillars have taught me a lot about their behaviours/growth to butterflies. I have also had about 6 casualties, 2 with damaged wings from falling off its perches and when I finally saw what had happened, it was too late to pick them up to help them hang their wings ! 1 died from black death, 1 from going in J form when it was only half its size and 2 going into J form without making its silk to hang from as above…. tks

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  • #43601


    Hi Jacqui, unfortunately the J caterpillar died – he felt soft/spongy almost like there was fluid inside – of course no movement. I don’t take kindly loosing one of my caterpillars – it would be good if anyone knows why this happens now and then ? Was it something he’s eaten, picked up a disease or what ? If anyone can help would be great, tks



    Hi Chrisalis, thanks for that advise…. yes I’ve sorted that one out already by dangling a frayed nylon string beside it so the butterflies can grasp onto it when hatching & I haven’t had one fall since then. Another instance where I had to rehang a chrysalis – I used a glue gun – I dabbed an amount of hot glue onto a wooden chop stick and gently put the chop stick with the glue onto the top of the chrysalis, let it cool and put it in a safe area like over a bowl so it can dangle until it hatches.

    And Jacqui – thank you for your kind words – yes, I’m so pleased with myself of what I have done so far. Since posting my first forum, I had another 5 butterflies that I released to the butterfly world ! It’s so rewarding…… my husband thinks I’m crazy !



    Hang something underneath hatching chrysalises that the butterflies can climb up if they fall off. I use stretchy plant ties.



    Hello Linae

    Great work with what you’re doing. You’ll have to let us know how you get on with this particular caterpillar.

    We often expect “perfection” but I have often been reminded that only about 3% of the eggs laid by monarchs will become beautiful butterflies – so your record is sterling.

    Please keep us in the picture.

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