I was casually sliding the Facebook Home, when I see a post that sounds like this: "To all those who have a garden: if you find this caterpillar (swallowtail) warn me ... I come to take it! I need it for an educational project at school. My students and me will take care of it. It will become a beautiful butterfly and then will be liberated in nature. Thank you!" with the image of a caterpillar looking round and soft, which presented wonderful colors: fluorescent green, neon orange, black and white.
What a tender caterpillar! And I immediately thought of the fact that I had seen several of them in our garden, above all attached to the young stalks of fennel. So I consulted with Viviana to ask if we could help her and, given me her consent, one day when we were in the garden doing chores, I saw one. I was so happy, as if I had found a treasure. I picked it up and put it in a plastic bottle with a few sprigs of fennel, drilling holes in the plastic so that it would breathe. But without even doing it on purpose, I see another, and yet another... in the end I have collected six! I was happy because we, as a farm, of course, do not like the fact that our vegetables are eaten by caterpillars, so when we see them, we move them away by hand one by one... but this seems like an excellent solution to do good to both (to the caterpillars and to our vegetable garden), in addition to the fact that in this project are involved children who can experience nature; these are things that will mold them and that in some way will develop in them a strong bond of respect with all living beings and not only with caterpillars. I then arranged with the teacher to bring them to her that evening. The teacher is called Stefania Grecu and teaches at the Rita Levi Montalcini Primary School in Bra (Piedmont, Italy). Meeting her I immediately noticed her sunny and sweet face, full of life. To her surprise I gave her the little group of six caterpillars, I was sure they were in good hands. She didn’t expect them (in fact I told her they were two, then I found others) but having many more she could divide them into her two classes along with others she had already brought to school. A few days later he updates me about the fact that all the caterpillars had become chrysalises, a truly mysterious and fascinating process of these insects. And I always ask myself the same thing: how does the caterpillar know that it must close itself in a chrysalis? Strong instincts, I think. However, this phase will last several months, until next spring, when beautiful butterflies will be born. Good transformation, little caterpillars, we can’t wait to admire your colorful wings!