Sunday, September 11, 2005

Mysterious hanging object at the Model-boat Pond

photo by M. Winn

Last night the youngest and perhaps most enthusiastic member of the Central Park [non-maternal] Mothers, Aiden Smith, aged four,, together with his father David, mother Paula, and younger brother James, aged 18 months [ a provisional member since he is more interested in flashlights than in moths], led us from the Moth Tree, [which we had decided to check, just in case, even though the moths seemed to have abandoned it -- and Lo! we found an uncommon Underwing moth called The Darling] to inspect a mysterious object he had discovered in the middle of a Black-eyed Susan flowerbed on the east side of the Model-boat Pond.

It was a lovely object on its own; my photograph does not do justice to the luminous green color, nor to the delicacy of the row of gold and black dots underneath the cone-shaped top. But in its future was something more beautiful still.

Nick pointed out that you could faintly see the outline of the creature that lay within, waiting for the right moment to emerge. For those of you who didn't recognize that odd green hanging object immediately, it is a chrysalid, and below you will see what it contains:

Monarch Butterfly
Photo by Lloyd Spitalnik