There are four stage of a Butterfly life cycle. The First Stage: The Egg - A butterfly starts life as a very small, round, oval or cylindrical egg. The Second Stage: The Larva (Caterpillar) - When the egg hatches, the caterpillar will start his work and eat the leaf they were born onto. The Third Stage: Pupa (Chrysalis) - As soon as a caterpillar is done growing and they have reached their full length/weight, they form themselves into a pupa, also known as a chrysalis. The Fourth Stage: Adult Butterfly - Finally, when the caterpillar has done all of its forming and changing inside the pupa, if you are lucky, you will get to see an adult butterfly emerge.