And here she is! Inchy emerges as a beautiful female Gypsy Moth. Larger than the male and white, she was also much bigger in her caterpillar form so next year we'll know ahead of time the sex of our babies!
Savannah was a little upset that Inchy didn't seem to want to fly to freedom the way Sparkle had, then we remembered from our reading that the females don't fly well and tend to just hop and flap around clumsily. We decided to put her back into the bug-box in the garden to keep her safe until she was ready to leave us....
...and then later that evening.....a male moth has found her! Theories abounded that it was Sparkle come back to say hello but...;} Isn't it just amazing, though? The male will have found her purely on scent! I am so GRATEFUL that we had this experience together...the kids (and us adults too!) learned so much about our wonderful, marvelous Earth and her creatures in such a fun and exciting way.
Note: A few days later, a friend - Madi -had captured a female Gypsy Moth in her bug box and we were all gathered around looking when suddenly, two male moths appeared and began flying around our group. At first we couldn't understand why they were fluttering around Madi so earnestly and then we realized -- they had smelled the female- IN THE BOX!! How amazing is that! So we took the lid off and tried to hold still so they could find their way to her. It's not easy for a group of excited kids to hold still though, so they never did make their way into the box..but isn't that AMAZING?!?! Try THAT in a classroom!