Monarch butterfly caterpillar

Monarch butterfly caterpillar

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Credit: MICHAEL P. GADOMSKI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Monarch butterfly caterpillar. Caterpillar of a monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) feeding on a leaf. After building up energy reserves, this larva will pupate and change into a butterfly, the adult stage of this insect. Monarchs are migratory butterflies native to North America. Millions of them migrate thousands of kilometres to the southern USA and Mexico for the winter. They spend this period in semi-hibernation, before mating in the spring and laying eggs from which caterpillars hatch on their journey back north. For a sequence showing the life cycle of this caterpillar and its pupa see images Z355/590-593.

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Keywords: animal, caterpillar, central, danaus plexippus, eating, feeding, insect, insecta, invertebrate, invertebrates, larvae, leaf, metamorphosis, mexico, monarch butterfly, nature, north america, stripes, united states, usa, wildlife, zoology

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