The caterpillars have gone through their instars, and are ready to start the process of metamorphosis into a butterfly. One caterpillar has hidden his chrysalis well, or somehow made his way outdoors under the screen door. Four of the caterpillars created, or are in the process of creating, their chrysalis cases on the screens and walls.
The caterpillars stiffen into this comma shape for quite awhile before the transformation to chrysalis takes place.
When the chrysalis forms it has quite an alien look.
Three of the caterpillars chose well and are five or six feet above the floor.
This one chose a terrible spot. He is only three feet up, on the doorjamb, exactly where the everyone passes when they go outdoors. I cut the bottom off a yogurt cup and used duct tape to place it around the unwise caterpillar as a barrier. Hopefully, I will be able to remove it when the time comes for him to emerge. I am hoping to post some photographs of black swallowtail in a few weeks.