Raising eggs to Monarchs

This page contains:

  • Guides on successfully rearing Monarchs.
  • Guides on attracting Monarchs
  • Important tips



  • Larvae of any size should not be handled when they are molting. They are getting ready to molt when they remain very still, often on the side or top of their container, and when you can see their black head capsule about to come off. Just after they have molted, their tentacles will look droopy, and you may see the old skin behind the larva. They will usually eat this skin!
  • Butterflies shouldn’t be handled for the first 4-5 hours after they emerge,and can be kept in the cage for up to a day before being released (or fed).
  • For disease prevention:
    • Rinse all cages after use with a 10-20% bleach solution
    • Rinse milkweed cuttings and leaves with water before serving
    • Use a mesh cage that allows good ventilation, allowing water to evaporate
    • Don’t let butterflies emerge from their chrysalides over feeding caterpillars
    • Spritz milkweed and caterpillars daily with a  spray bottle filled with water