Showcasing an unbelievable set of DIY skills, a Texas-based woman repaired a newborn monarch butterfly's broken wing, saving the little creature's life and helping it fly for the first time.
In September, costume designer Romy McCloskey saw a few caterpillars crawling in her garden and decided to take them in. She kept them in a glass tank and fed them for several months, waiting to release them as colourful butterflies someday.
"Before my mother died, almost 20 years ago, she said to me, 'Romy, whenever you see a butterfly, know that I'm there with you and that I love you,'" McCloskey told Newsweek, elucidating the special connection she shares with the little creatures.
However, things took a drastic turn when one of the butterflies got injured while pupating. When it emerged from the cocoon, one of its wings was torn, something that not only kept it from flying but would have also led to its death.
A desperate McCloskey, looking for any possible way to save the creature's life, took the matter to Facebook. That's when a friend of hers came up with a video detailing the steps to repair butterfly wings.
Using the video guide and her skills as a costume designer, the 43-year-old conducted a critical butterfly surgery and replaced the damaged wing with the wing of another butterfly which had died a few days earlier. She pinned the creature down with a clothespin and trimmed the edges (like cutting hairs) of the broken wing, without hurting it in any way.
Then, she fitted the wing from the dead butterfly with glue, allowing the 3-day-old creature to survive. The whole process was akin to "making a couture garment," she said.
It is worth noting that the replaced wing was a little different from the original one but proved good enough for the little one to take off to the skies.
"We had a successful flight! A quick spin around the backyard, then a little rest on one of the bushes... then... "like the down of a thistle "... off he flew! My heart soared with him, for sure," McCloskey said in a Facebook post, which has garnered more than 15,000 likes and 20,000 shares thus far.