Romy McCloskey is a costume designer by training, with a specialty in intricate bead work that demands precision. She also raises and releases monarch butterflies at her Texas home.
It just so happened that these two skills intersected on a recent day when she actually performed surgery on one of her injured monarch’s wings, an operation that saved its life and allowed it to fly away to migrate.
“Hopefully he’s having a margarita down in Mexico with his buddies,” said McCloskey, 43, a mother of two boys.
The butterfly catastrophe-turned-victory tale began a few weeks ago when McCloskey was at her home in suburban Houston and looked over at her cocoons, only to see her house cat Floki swatting at them, thinking they were toys. Floki’s paw had knocked one down, fatally injuring it, and left another damaged.
“It had a crack in the cocoon,” McClosky said. “I thought, “please don’t let it die.”
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