How silk is “born”

The process of obtaining silk threads is not as simple as it might seem. Getting silk threads depends not only on technology and human work, but also on natural processes. First of all, a silkworm butterfly lays up to 500 eggs. After 20-25 days, caterpillars hatch from the eggs, which eat mulberry leaves for 30 days. In the process of eating leaves, the weight of the caterpillars increases up to 10 thousand times. The caterpillar begins to weave a cocoon of silk thread around it. In 48 hours, the caterpillar weaves around itself about 1,500 meters of silk thread. Inside the cocoon, the caterpillar turns into a chrysalis, and this is where the natural process ends. Masters need to have time to collect cocoons before butterflies appear, otherwise they can gnaw and ruin the silk. Then the cocoons are immersed in hot water to kill the caterpillars and dissolve the protective layer. The final part of the work is the weaving of threads, the processing and creation of valuable silk. Interesting fact. For the production of one silk dress, 2000 caterpillars are needed, which eate 2 silk trees