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Moths are cultivated for silk production, and their cocoons are collected for silk threads.
Silkworm rearing:
A female silk moth can lay hundreds of eggs at any given time. The eggs are kept carefully on strips of paper or cloth and sold to silkworm farmers. The farmers hold these eggs under hygienic conditions and suitable temperature and humidity conditions.
The eggs are heated to the proper temperature to hatch the larvae. It is accomplished when mulberry trees bear a new crop of leaves. The larvae, called silkworms or caterpillars, eat day and night and increasing the size.
The larvae are held in clean bamboo trays and freshly diced mulberry leaves. After 25 - 30 days, the caterpillars stop eating and move to a small bamboo chamber in the tray to spin cocoons. Small racks or twigs are provide in the trays to which cocoons get connected. The silk moth is developed when the caterpillar or silkworm spins a cocoon inside.
Silk processing:
A pile of cocoons is used for getting silk fibres. The cocoons are held under the sun or boiled or exposed to steam. The silk fibres separate. They obtain threads from a cocoon to use them as silk through the process is known as "reeling the silk. Reeling is done in unique apparatuses, which unwind the threads or fibres of silk from the cocoon. Silk fibres are then spun into silk threads woven into silk cloth by weavers.