Butterfly Journal For 8/28/2021 – 9/11/2021

Fiery Skipper (Hylephila phyleus)

Since my last report I recorded 28 observations of 7 species, bringing the annual butterfly total in my garden to 473. During this decidedly unexciting 15-day period, sightings overall were down with Fiery Skippers accounting for 12 of the 28, nearly 43%.

It has temporarily cooled off a bit but remains extremely dry.  A friend who lives 30 miles away experienced 2.5 inches of rain in one-half hour Thursday, causing a short-lived flash flood in her backyard, while we had barely enough rain to dampen the ground. Clouds have passed right by us all summer.

Butterfly Sightings 8/28/2021 –  9/11/2021

8/28/2021 Eastern Tiger Swallowtail – Papilio glaucus 1
8/28/2021 Silver-spotted Skipper – Epargyreus clarus 1
8/28/2021 Ocola Skipper – Panoquina ocola 2
8/29/2021 Eastern Tiger Swallowtail – Papilio glaucus 1
8/30/2021 Ocola Skipper – Panoquina ocola 1
9/2/2021 Dun Skipper – Euphyes vestris 1
9/2/2021 Silver-spotted Skipper – Epargyreus clarus 2
9/2/2021 Fiery Skipper – Hylephila phyleus 1
9/2/2021 Ocola Skipper – Panoquina ocola 1
9/2/2021 Fiery Skipper – Hylephila phyleus 2
9/6/2021 Fiery Skipper – Hylephila phyleus 4
9/8/2021 Monarch – Danaus plexippus 1
9/10/2021 Eastern Tiger Swallowtail – Papilio glaucus 1
9/10/2021 Monarch – Danaus plexippus 1
9/10/2021 Fiery Skipper – Hylephila phyleus 5
9/10/2021 Ocola Skipper – Panoquina ocola 2
9/11/2021 Black Swallowtail – Papilio polyxenes 1

Fiery Skipper (Hylephila phyleus)

Recently solo Monarchs have entered the garden, swept through the borders quickly and exited quickly without regard for the already dejected, resident paparazzi. Similarly, Eastern Tiger Swallowtails which are usually plentiful by also are sailing past rather than enjoying the delights of lantana and zinnias the garden table is offering. This monarch took an interest in verbena bonariensis.

September 8 , 2021 Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus)

The garden’s first Dun Skipper sighting since 2015 made it into this report. As is true with many of the skippers, I needed help with this ID. iNaturalist suggested a different species, but the yellow-gold on top of the head and few spots on the forewings helped my resources agree it is a Dun female.

Dun Skipper (Euphyes vestris)

After feeling rather disappointed about the current state of butterflies a mid-afternoon visit today from a spectacular Black Swallowtail has lifted my spirits. The butterfly was beautiful and appeared quite fresh.

Black Swallowtail (Papilio polyxenes)

Black Swallowtail (Papilio polyxenes)

Also hanging out in the garden in early September are huge spiders, anoles, bumblebees, birds, hummingbird clearwings and ever hopeful dragonflies.

Argiope aurantia (Black and Yellow Garden Spider)

Bumblebee (Bombus)

Hummingbird Clearwing (Hemaris thysbe)

Great Blue Skimmer (Libellula vibrans)

Back to butterflies, this Ocola was particularly cooperative in posing.

Ocola Skipper (Panoquina ocola)

Happy Butterflying or enjoying nature in any way you can.

August 28, 2021  Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus)

 

15 thoughts on “Butterfly Journal For 8/28/2021 – 9/11/2021

  1. Beth@PlantPostings

    Beautiful sightings! The monarchs are plentiful here currently, and they’re obviously migrating–moving in a south/southwest direction as they move from flower to flower in the prairies and open areas. Fascinating creatures, all of them, and your photos are beautiful!

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      Beth you are fortunate to see an abundance of monarchs. Such a treat that would be. I’ve had 5-6 at one time in previous years but this is a down year for them and other butterflys.

      Reply
  2. theshrubqueen

    Interesting to compare butterfly sightings – I have been seeing a lot of Longtail Skippers, Monarchs, Zebras and a couple of different Swallowtails. The Black Swallowtail photo is fabulous. I was interested to find out there are Monarchs in New Zealand?!

    Reply
    1. pbmgarden Post author

      I saw Longtail Skippers last year but none this year. Apparently even the expert butterflyers aren’t seeing them this year either. Curious about NZ! Just looked that up and found “monarchs in New Zealand do not appear to migrate.” Very interesting–thanks for that info.

      Reply
      1. theshrubqueen

        These Skippers showed up recently, bright blue bodies, they have hosted on my green beans (none in the garden currently) Have not been able to get a picture. Do you know Jane Mudgee’s garden? She made the NZ comment. Very interesting as I thought Monarchs were North American.

  3. Kris P

    I enjoy your photos as always. I haven’t even seen many skippers of late here. The cloudless sulphurs, which I find exceedingly difficult to photograph, are the most prevalent at the moment.

    Reply
  4. Cathy

    Beautiful photos, especially of the Black Swallowtail. We are getting a nice mix of butterrflies again at last, after weeks of just peacocks and cabbage whites! Happy butterfly watching!

    Reply

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