Life cycle of the Silkworm

by Joel
(Sydney, Australia)

Silkworm cycle

Silkworm cycle

Today, the 13th of November, 2008, I took a photo of the silkworms in their different stages.

I will describe the silkworm cycle.

First the silkworm comes out of its egg (this happened in September). It comes out as a tiny caterpillar or larva, which is really, really tiny, and it eats lots and lots of mulberry leaves. At first they don't eat heaps because they are so small, but as they grow, they eat a lot and I needed to change the leaves each day.

In their brain, messages are sent to tell the larva to make a new skin (cuticle) and not to become an adult. The new cuticle develops and the old cuticle comes off. The larva moults a number of times which might take from 1-3 months. Some of our silkworms took a long time before they began making their cocoon.



Then the juvenile hormone which stopped it becoming an adult, is reduced so that it doesn't send anymore messages to the brain about not becoming an adult. It then spins its cocoon and the pupa inside starts changing.

This only happens when the juvenile hormone stops altogether. Then the pupa changes and develops wings, antennas, eyes, legs and new organs.

Then after all the changes the adult breaks through the cocoon. Then the silk moth comes out, finds its mate (they can't fly), mates with their abdomens together and then they lay heaps of eggs and the cycle begins again in the next spring.

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Oct 13, 2013
For Viva
by: MudaSsir

AWESOME.......
easy to understand
Thankyou:-

Sep 12, 2012
Science Project
by: Anonymous

You helped me complete my project but it needs a little bit of more information thanks a lot....!!!!!!!!!

Sep 07, 2012
cool science
by: Anonymous

Very Cool!

Sep 05, 2012
science project on silkworms
by: keerthi

Thanks a lot. I got 20 marks for this!

Apr 09, 2012
NICE!!!AWSOME!!WOW!!COOL!!
by: Jacky

I LIKE IT IT'S GREAT!! BECAUSE I HAVE SILK WORMS IN THE SCHOOL(ZENG CHENG UTAHLOY IN CHINA)!!AND WE'VE GOT HOMEWORK TO FIND ABOUT SILK WORMS IT WAS JUST GREAT!!I FINISHED VERY FAST CAUSE OF YOUR WEBSITE, I LIKED YOUR WEB BUT I THINK NEEDS I LITTLE MORE INFORMATION GO ON THERE. IT WAS AWSOME!!I LIKE SILK WORMS. THANKS FOR THE INFORMATION ABOUT THE SILK WORM CYCLE!!!COOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mar 01, 2012
thanks
by: Archana

It helped me in doing my project. I liked it a lot!


Dec 11, 2011
Egg Cycle
by: Maggie

Hi there,
Thank you for your info. Our moths laid their eggs about october this year after emerging from their cocoons. Does that mean that we have approx 11 months wait till the new eggs pop (as u stated they hatch around September). We seem to be opening the box every day to check but no worms yet???
Kind regards Maggie

Dec 04, 2011
xtreme
by: Anonymousrain

you guys are sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo awesome

Dec 04, 2011
cool
by: Anonymous2

awesome help heaps

Nov 30, 2011
life cycle
by: Anonymous

thankyou so much
it helped me a lot
EXCELLENTE .....!!!!
marvellous....

Oct 20, 2011
The Life Cycle
by: Alexis

I never knew that thanks for improving my knowledge. Now,I can tell my class.

Jul 16, 2011
life cycle of silkworm - thanks
by: sangita

Thanks for improving my knowledge about life cycle of silkworm.......

Jun 11, 2011
silkworms
by: Lavender Lillypad

now I understand. Thanks!

May 20, 2011
Great
by: Agalia

AWESOME!! it really helps my project! easy to understand! Good Job ! just love this!

Apr 21, 2011
Great!!
by: Anonymous

Awsome picture and how did you get them lined up for it?

Apr 19, 2011
okay
by: ipseeta

Hi,

It was okay, but not okay for me as it did not tell me any useful information.

bye

Apr 11, 2011
i like silkworms
by: samuel

cool man. I think silkworms are cool.

Feb 04, 2011
life cycle of silk worms
by: sulbha shiikerrwaiker

the information is excellent. I am trying to study their life cycle by growing the worms. It's about at 20 days and they have become varocious eaters.

Jan 21, 2011
thanx
by: aprajita

dude thanx that really helped me in my project

Dec 05, 2010
its very useful
by: muskaan

It has helped me making my zoology project and I am really thankful.

Nov 03, 2010
Silk Worm Challenges & Triumphs
by: Kylie

Great reporting Joel.
We had 11 silk worms this year, which we got from a pet shop. They all ate voraciously and grew fat, but then only 3 managed to spin cocoons successfully. The others died in the bottom of the container with only a little silk around them.

Of the 3 cocoons, only 2 hatched.
Of the moths that hatched, one had very small underdeveloped wings, like stumps; while the other was fully winged and beautiful.

Luckily, despite the apparent handicaps, we now have lots of eggs to keep for next year.

I wonder if the poor cocoon spinning rate and the underdeveloped wings had any significance. For example, could these creatures have been sensitive to the plastic of the container we kept them in; or was there some residue on our mulberry leaves from something chemical that may have been sprayed in our neighborhood?

I can't wait till next silk work season to see it all unfold again!

Sep 28, 2010
Raising silkworms
by: sassy

What reason would someone have to want to raise silkworms?

Sep 05, 2010
the picture was really nice how did you take this and overall i was really nice!!!
by: sai parthiv

thye picture you took was really nice how did you take this
and overall it was really nice

Sep 02, 2010
Silkmoths and Butterflies
by: Joel

Hi Wahida,
No, moths come from silkworm larvae and they cannot fly.

Butterflies come from caterpillars. See my page on the Monarch Butterfly and the video there shows the monarch caterpillar hanging upside down and becoming a chrysalis.

http://www.design-your-homeschool.com/monarch-butterfly-chrysalis.html

Then you can also see the butterfly coming out of the chrysalis in this video we took on this page.

http://www.design-your-homeschool.com/monarch-butterfly-life-cycle.html

Sep 02, 2010
brielient
by: Anonymous

that was perffectly awsomme

Aug 21, 2010
do butterflies come from silkworms
by: wahida begum

send me the answer





Aug 18, 2010
it was okay
by: Anonymous

It was not very good but it was also not bad. Yes,it was OK ! OK !

Aug 16, 2010
please
by: Anonymous

i think there should be a little intro
but thanks for all the info

Aug 08, 2010
awesome
by: raj

it helped me alot thanks

Jul 26, 2010
AWESOME
by: rutman

It helped in my chemistry project.

Jul 08, 2010
thanks
by: Anonymous

Thanks. I was not able to understand but this made me understand .

Jul 01, 2010
thankx
by: Anonymous

i science xam help
was almost dead for not bein attentive at d lectures
thanks that u kept this info
it helped me a lot 2 appear me xams

Jun 29, 2010
gud
by: mb

thanks it helped in bio project.!

Jun 28, 2010
excellent!
by: amritha

it helped in the last minute for my assignment.

Jun 21, 2010
good
by: Anonymous

IT WAS HELPUL FOR THE PROJECT
IT HELPED ME UNDERSTANDING WHOLE PROCESS
THANX

Jun 21, 2010
okay
by: Divya

This is a simple discription .
I dont liked it much as this does not tell full life cycle .

Jun 01, 2010
very nice description
by: shelly narula

This is a very nice,simple and sufficient description of the life cycle of silk worm.

May 01, 2010
1 comment
by: Ashley

Thanks very much for that descriptive little story about your silkworms.I am going to try and enter it into the fair at my school.It is for my open house project.

Apr 22, 2010
Marvellous
by: Vibhas

It helped me a lot as i had to the life cycle of
silk worms

Apr 20, 2010
Amazing
by: Manisha

Thank you so much. I really needed It for my Science Project.

Apr 15, 2010
thanks?>
by: Anonymous

*THANKS*!!!!!!!!!!

Apr 14, 2010
This was my project and it helped me a lot thank you
by: Naved Ahmed

This was my project and it helped me a lot thank you

Feb 05, 2010
its great
by: mansa

This helped me a lot thanks thank u

Jan 25, 2010
wow!!
by: Anonymous

great work!!!!
nice pics!!!

Jan 25, 2010
thanks
by: Rosie

The information you gave was very helpful. the photograph is great........thanks joel.

Jan 19, 2010
sikworm
by: ronaldo

today i got some eggs of silworm it is very strange

Dec 25, 2009
thx joel
by: jas

its helped me in my project

Dec 01, 2009
cheers
by: steve

Itiwas great. Just what I was looking for. Thanks for the infomation.

cheers steve

Oct 17, 2009
Tiny silkworms and cocoons
by: Joel

Hi,
When the silk moths come out of their cocoons, they mate and lay 50-100 eggs (perhaps more) and then they die. They do not live long at all - perhaps 2-3 weeks.

It does not matter to have the cocoons in the same box as the other silkworms.

All silkworms are only interested in eating, so as long as they have fresh leaves, they are happy.

When our silk moths were tiny, we just put the new leaves on top of the old ones and the silkworms just crawl on to the fresh leaves. When they get older and we can handle them, we clean out the box and just make sure all of them are on the new leaves.

Then we also put in some old egg cartons and the silkworms often make their cocoons in them across the corners. It doesn't really matter where they decide to place their cocoons.

Oct 16, 2009
pets
by: mulberry

Hi,

i bought 15 silkworms about two weeks ago. They were all at different stages, some were huge and other were tiny. Just recently, two cocoons appeared on the top corners of the caardboard shoe box i was keeping them in.
How do i clean out the droppings? i am afraid that i will empty some dropping onto the cocoon and silk.
Also when the moths emege should i keep them in the same box as the others or should i separate them?
Anyway, your info was very helpful!!

Oct 12, 2009
eggs
by: merlin

BUT HOW MANY EGGS DOES THE SILKWORM LAY?

Oct 11, 2009
Thanks
by: Robert

Thanks for the info. It has helped. I would like a bit more like when do they have eggs and how long. But anyway u have helped.

Oct 08, 2009
Thankyou
by: Angela

Thanks for the info.
It helped alot because I have 3 silkworms at home and they were taking a while to cocoon. Now I know that it can take a while.

Oct 03, 2009
very good
by: pedro

Thanks a lot for the information. When I was in school rearing silk worm was one thing that I used to love but I failed to make it into a pupa or butterfly that will lay eggs so that I can have more silk worms.

How long does it take after becoming a pupa to lay eggs and how many pupa or butterflies do I need so that they can mate an reproduce?...your reply will be very helpful..my email add is virusoflife13@yahoo.com

Oct 02, 2009
good
by: Anonymous

I think the info is too good and I hope it will help me in my project

Sep 06, 2009
great information
by: Anonymous

thanks for the information. I'm doing an assignment on silkworms and this helped a lot!

Sep 04, 2009
Silkworm eggs site
by: Anonymous

I found a site for silkworms and eggs, bought eggs from them last year. They were great

www.aussiesilkworms.com

Aug 24, 2009
That was great!
by: Anonymous

Great Silkworm Life Cycle you have made.

Aug 22, 2009
nice dude
by: ashlee

dude that was great info.i am doing a report on it . thanx dude

Jul 21, 2009
hi guys
by: sam

That's so useful

Jul 17, 2009
hi students
by: sudeep

hi..
i cultivate mulberry trees and also silkworms here in my lab..
its amazing to have them....

Jul 10, 2009
its awesome
by: prial

Its gr8... the information given is very easy to understand and remember. the picts r really gr8

Jul 09, 2009
that's cool
by: alice

that's very cool having silkworms. Do you know another name of pupa? Do you have hundreds of silkmoths?

Jun 03, 2009
That is very nice.
by: Bob

That is pretty cool how you could watch the eggs and then the worms and then the cocoons and see them silk months come out and mate and lay eggs.

Boy you are lucky.

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