life cycle of a silk moth
The life cycle of a silkworm starts when a female silk moth lays eggs on the mulberry leaves and ends when pupa enters into the adult stage and emerges out of the cocoon as a silk moth.
When a female moth lays eggs on the mulberry leaves, after sometime, these eggs hatch into larvae. These larvae are known as caterpillars or silkworms.Slowly these caterpillars grow in size by feeding only on the leaves of mulberry trees.
The next stage in the life cycle of a silkworm is a pupa. When the caterpillar has grown large enough and is ready to go to the stage of pupa, it starts weaving a net around itself to hold itself. Then, it moves its head from one side to another, making a figure eight (8). During these movements, caterpillars secrete a fibre made of protein, which solidifies and hardens when exposed to air for some time. This is the silk fibre. Caterpillars continue to spin silk fibre till they completely get covered by these fibres. This silk covering in which a silkworm covers itself is known as a cocoon. Further development of the silkworm takes place inside the cocoon, and it enters the pupa stage. After sometime, the pupa enters into the adult stage and emerges out of the cocoon as a moth. The whole process thus continues and is known as the life cycle of a silkworm.