Prising2 mins 133 2 mins 133
One afternoon, after enjoying their special lunch they went for a walk in that spacious public park.
Something suddenly caught Suma’s attention. She could see something struggling under the leaf of a plant. She peeped in to find out what. She could see there a three-spot Grass Yellow butterfly struggling to emerge from its pupa, a process known as eclosing, but faced an uneasy situation. Awkwardly, the feet and wings had emerged first, leaving the head, antennae, and proboscis still trapped inside the pupal case. The half-born creature could not emerge out. This was, indeed, for the butterfly, something similar to breech birth. In mammals, sometimes “breech birth” occurs, where the head is not delivered first, and consequently, complications develop.
Rahul gently tried prising the pupal case apart; both the pupa and the butterfly were detached from the leaf and fell to the ground. But the head still remained inside the pupal case.
“Please do something. I don’t want it to be dead.”
Suma’s eyes brimmed with tears and she desperately wanted to help the butterfly. She watched restlessly.
“Don’t panic. Please wait.” Rahul relaxed for a while to think of a way to solve this crucial problem. If he used his fingers with force, the butterfly may break into pieces and the wings may come off from its body. The butterfly looked tiny and helpless.
“Now, we have two choices”
“What?” Suma queried.
“To intervene or to leave it to nature.”
“But leaving things to nature means death for the butterfly.”
“Yes. If we intervened, we may damage the head or proboscis, but there is a chance of “delivering” the butterfly.”
Rahul took the little creature in his hands and moved his index fingernail very, very gently to pry the pupal case apart.
It was a lucky moment for the head, the antennae, and the proboscis emerged, unhurt. But, the wings were still crinkled inside the pupa; the butterfly could not spread its wings.
The butterfly rested still on the inner palm of Rahul. Now, Suma lifted the little creature from his palm and placed it on the broad leaf of a nearby plant. They stood there for another ten minutes. People who were strolling nearby looked at them wondering what made them stand there.
The warm breeze dried the wings of the butterfly and it slowly fluttered its wings and landed on the grass. In two seconds, it flew above and sat on the petals of a fragrant rose on the side-walk. Suma expressed her joy with a broad smile.
Nowadays, animal rescue is common with birds and mammals. A pressing demand to aid in the difficult birth of a butterfly saved its life which would have otherwise ended.