Life Cycle of a Butterfly

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Updated on: Educator Review By: Michelle Connolly

How is a butterfly formed or what are the stages that it goes through? The life cycle of a butterfly is also referred to as “butterfly metamorphosis” and it is the cycle that brings this beautiful creature to us at the end and thus kids should know more about it all.

The Life Cycle of a Butterfly | Caterpillar to Butterfly | Bufferfly Facts for Kids | Life Cycle

Since butterflies are actually the final creation and advancement of a caterpillar, it makes kids more eager to know how the whole process goes and what are the different stages that butterflies go through to reach the final look.

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The Life Cycle of a Butterfly

The first stage in the life cycle of a butterfly is the egg. Like lots of other species, the egg is the first part in the formation of the butterfly. The butterfly actually lays its egg on the leaf of a plant and the interesting thing about these eggs is that one could actually see the tiny caterpillar being formed inside the egg if one gets close enough to it.

The second stage or part in the life cycle of the butterfly is the larva or the caterpillar and in this stage, the egg hatches and the butterfly larvae come out. The butterfly larvae are small little caterpillars. The interesting thing is when the egg hatches and gives the caterpillar the permission to go into the outside world, at this point the caterpillar will start eating its own shell and then go further to eat the leaf itself. In order for the caterpillar to grow, it actually sheds its skin several times.

The third stage in the life cycle of a butterfly is called the pupa or the chrysalis. The formation of this beautiful creature you see at the end is as interesting as looking at the final appearance of it. The third part of this life cycle is when the caterpillar is done growing and has reached its full size, at this point it forms into a pupa which is some kind of a protective layer formed around it. In this stage, the chrysalis, the pupa actually goes through many different changes since the old body parts of the caterpillar are actually undergoing a remarkable transformation and this is referred to and known as “metamorphosis”.

At this level and in the fourth stage, the butterfly will be actually forming. The fourth stage in the butterfly life cycle is known as the adult butterfly since the caterpillar will be turning to one at this point. After about 15 days going through the three different stages we have mentioned, a beautiful butterfly will come out of the chrysalis. When the butterfly comes out, its wings are usually still soft and wet and that’s the reason why it will be pumping out fluid into those wings to make them strong and give them the chance to grow. After three or four hours from pumping this fluid, the wings of the butterfly become strong and ready to fly.

These are the different stages that bring out the beautiful butterflies that you tend to see in the garden. The life cycle of the butterfly is also referred to as butterfly metamorphosis and this is the cycle that explains to the people how a caterpillar is turned into a butterfly. There are hundreds of different types of butterflies and every single one of them is as beautiful as the other.

Kids always love to play with animals, birds and flies and they feel more interested and excited to know about them, that’s why we decided to tell them more about the butterfly life cycle. Kids could also know more about snakes through this link (Snake Facts for Kids…), they could get more informed with some facts related to dinosaurs which little boys love or if they are so much into the world of animals, you could teach your kids the alphabet through using animals and their names, check this link to learn more.

There are lots of educational videos in general that kids could learn something about the world they are living in through, they could even check some information about the planets (Facts about the Solar System) or get to learn more about science, such as knowing about the bones (How Do Bones Work) or the heart (Heart Facts for Kids).

If you enjoyed learning about this facinating animal why not check out more fantastic facts about other animals: Koalas, Ostrich and Raccoon.

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