Posts Tagged ‘spicebush swallowtail’

A Passing Spicebush Swallowtail

So few butterflies have visited our backyard this summer. Their numbers have been the lowest I’ve ever seen.

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So, I got excited when a spicebush swallowtail flew across our backyard on its way south. It didn’t stop.

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Our yard’s been full of them at times over the years … them and many other butterfly species too.

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A butterfly in an odd position usually means it’s in the clutches of a predator.

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In this case it was a female crab spider.

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Females are much bigger than the males.

Crab spiders have the ability to change color to match the color of the flower they’re on. Obviously, this one hadn’t changed yet. I have no idea how long the change takes.

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A Short Hike

Mine and Buffy’s hike started out as usual on the trail edging this lake.

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Tiger swallowtail butterflies flew from this swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) before I could get their picture.

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Aphids covered the upper stems of the few milkweeds.

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Square-stemmed monkey-flower (Mimulus ringens) grew in a dense patch.

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Patches of woodland sunflowers (Helianthus divaricatus) were common in the woods.

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Button bush (Cephalanthus occidentalis) usually attracts  numerous butterflies.

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Ironweed (Vernonia baldwini) is also a butterfly magnet. Only this spicebush swallowtail cooperated for a picture.

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Thunder rumbled behind us. I took a quick picture of this fog fruit (Lippia lanceolata), and we hurried back to the truck.