Friday, October 16, 2009

On the wings of summer

While birds and flowers are my first loves when it comes to nature observation, over the last year I have added butterflies, moths and dragonflies to an ever-growing list of subjects that pique my interest. While I have not yet spent much time learning about the intricacies of these creatures, and still have a long way to go in my identification skills, their beauty does not fail to impress me. Here are some interesting finds I made in early August of this year. (If anyone finds fault with my IDs, please let me know!)

Little Wood Satyr

Zabulon Skipper (male)

Clouded (?) Sulphur

Hummingbird Clearwing Moth, the star of the show that day. This moth happily nectared on this large patch of Bee Balm for a long time.

While perusing the Butterflies and Moths of North America website, I noticed that they showed no record of the Hummingbird Clearwing for Athens County, so I submitted a couple of photos to the regional coordinator for consideration. I just love citizen science! Earlier this year I put Athens County on the map with my record of the Polyphemus Moth. If you are at least mildly interested in butterflies or moths, you really should check this site out.


Kristen said...

Thanks for linking to the Butterflies and Moths site, I had looked at it over the summer and noticed that I'd seen some moths in our area that weren't marked on their chart as having records for in our county, but then I forgot what the site was! I'll have to look up what the moths were and send pictures :)

btw, really nice depth on the second clearwing picture! i know how hard that is to do when they move so much. i love your photography :)

NW Nature Nut said...

That Skipper looks like he has a smile on his little face. Very good photos. I love how clear and close-up they are. Not easy to do with these fast moving guys. Neat that you got the first recorded Clearwing too. Way to go!

Ginnymo said...

Beautiful close ups Heather!! I love looking at bugs up close. Their eyes are fascinating. Can't help you with names. I don't know a thing about Butterflies or Moths.

Heather said...

Kristen - Glad I could be of help with the link. I think that's great that you'll be able to provide them with some new records for your county! Thanks so much for your nice compliments.

Michele - Yes, I agree with you about the Skipper "smiling." I think he's quite charming. These pictures are cropped pretty tightly, so I'm lucky that they are so cleanly focused.

Ginny - Thanks so much. I agree, their "buggy" eyes are pretty cool.

RuthieJ said...

Oh Heather, your photos are amazing! I loved seeing the details on these butterflies and moths.

nina at Nature Remains. said...

The curled proboscis is perfect!!!!

Heather said...

Ruthie - Thank you so much. I'm glad I was able to get such sharp photos of these fast-moving creatures.

Nina - Ha, thanks! One of those times when snapping off almost 100 photos of the same thing paid off! Lady luck was on my side that day.