This morning, I went out to check the chrysalis and give it a drop of water. When I touched the eyedropper to it, it wiggled! So I knew it was nearly time for the butterfly to emerge. And a few hours later, it did. I don't remember ever watching this process before - it is fascinating - the butterfly climbs up the side of the mesh enclosure and stops to let her wings unfurl and dry. She is wet and bedraggled and clearly working hard. The wings stay small for a while, and then, with every breath of wind, they grow a little more.
Before she was completely dry, I let her crawl into my hand and I took her out of the enclosure and sat with her in the garden for a good long while. She crawled up my arm and to my shoulder where she perched for a long time.
Her proboscis stayed curled up, and every so often she would straighten it out as if to taste the air. I kept trying to get her on the Dutchman's pipevine, so she would know where to come and lay eggs later in the season (if indeed she is a female) but it was a little floppy for hanging. Finally I put her on the Ribes (flowering currant) right next to the vine and there she stayed until I left to go hiking with Adam.
Her colors are so beautiful!
When I came home, she was gone. I hope to see her fluttering about again. I sure have plenty of flowers for her to feed from.
The husk of the cocoon: