Quoting: --I don't know about him, but I was cold!
Hah, Bruce, it's cold even down South! But I'm so glad you've posted the pic. of the dark BST. 'Cause I raised many of them but never a dark form before. Please keep us posted how it fairs in the garden. Marna, I lost about a dozen Gulf Frits. cats this past week. They just vanished out of sight, I'm not kidding. I've my precious 'Autumn Star' spicebush in the same butterfly cage which is in the process of making its cocoon, so I don't want to disturb their habitat for now--in order to find out if their is any remnant of survivors in there. But, I was wondering if Sassafras has chemical that harmed my G.F.s????
One of the late 'migrant' made it by my garden yesterday, temp. dips down to 39F last night so undoubtedly it was on his way further South as we type.
In contrast, I've more Sulphurs this year for some reason. Marna. Great pix. Today in the garden, I once again saw a lone Monarch. It was a 'boy' so I knew not to frantically search for eggs being left behind by any chances. lol Also saw a 'Long-tailed skipper' Not an official name mind you. But one I so loved for its long tail. Several Brazilian skippers, a Red Admiral and a Hackberry Emperor I think. No pix, sorry.
Great pictures of your Longtailed skipper (Urbanus proteus), sunkissed. Bravos! You've beaten me to the punch. I saw one here too in the garden, but your photos beat mine hand down. lol. Amanda, congrats on your Sulphurs eclosure.
I hadn't seen any Monarch's for a couple weeks but today I saw one lone female on on my Milkweed and she was laying eggs, I see at least seven of them. I'm gonna keep an eye on them...how long till I see a caterpillar emerge?
Those are lovely wild MG you've gotten there. And the Sulphur just enhances the beauty! Another great pix. This maybe my first Pear crescent (Phyciodes tharos) for the season, I don't remember having seen one before until this late in the season. The garden mum is newly acquired. :)
Lily those pretty MG are on the man made bike trail all over. They have Cassias planted along it also, many wild flowers that attract the BF's, it is why I started taking my camera when going for my bike rides. I'm supposed to be getting exercise, but always stopping and taking pictures or seed collecting...LOL. That pear crescent blends right into those gorgeous orange Mums.
Amanda so neat to see...hope you get your butterfly today, I'd love to see a picture of that.
Lots of great pictures of the pearl crescent.
I'm not sure about this one, I have looked in the guides and think it may be a Palamedes Swallowtail. So I'm asking all you wonderful experts opinion. Here is the best shot I got of it, was really on the move.
released my first monarch of the season today and s/he headed south at approximately 2:30 p.m. EST. Should be heading your way. I have forgotten all about markings so I don't know which this is - I had a feeling it was a girl. Or a boy.
Great pics everyone!
Amanda...Yes, bring that senna inside, it is an annual even down here. Whoo Hoo on the Monarch release!
Good to see pictures ...the monarch was a female btw.
I have been busy but when I have had time I did bring in eggs and cats I come across; some will emerge this weekend I think. I also managed to find time to tag and release about eight Monarchs that I netted (5 today). Most have been males thus far.
BCH...I had one of the dark BST cats one time also. Did some research but couldn't find out what the reason was for that coloration. Mine is on parsley here, not sure where it was when collected.
Wow I was just reading about the eggs and see that there is only a 10% chance they'll make it to an actual BF. Now I understand why some of you take the time to harvest the eggs and raise them to be a BF. I travel too much to try my hand at raising butterflies, but can now see what a rewarding experience it must be to successfully bring a butterfly into the world.
Well... I won't let it frustrate me in continuing to make a wonderful garden for butterflies...I must somehow be doing my part in the conservation of the butterfly population. I hope so at least.
2 monarchs and 1 sulfur eclosed and released today. One of the monarchs took his time coming out, but protested when I tried to offer him lodging overnight. Instead, he is sitting atop my highest hyssop about 12' off the ground, facing south out there in the dark. It was a good day. :)
A late invitation, but anyone in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area is welcome to come to an open house visit to my butterfly farm on Saturday October 8th from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. You can tour around the gardens, see hundreds of caterpillars of many different species, walk through the flight cage which will have a number of live butterflies flitting about ovipositing eggs, and look through an extensive butterfly collection with specimens from around the world. You can find directions on the DCLS website (below) under Calendar of Events.
Meant to post this earlier but just got busy with other things -- like a cracked tooth, a fallen tree on my potting shed this afternoon, and various other incidents of rather bad luck. Hope to see some of you. If nothing else, I'll take some pictures and post them.
Dallas County Lepidopterists' Society
I would definately try to be there Dale but had appts this am and need to take DH some clean clothes to rehab. Please post some pictures. I know you have some on the website, but always love to see more. Bummer on the tooth and the tree...and the stress I am sure they brought you.
Good day in the garden today, that is for October. Monarch, Fiery skipper, Variegated Fritillary, Silver-spotted skipper and of course cabbage whites. Got a couple of pictures to share later. Oh, and my last BST made its Chrysalis.
I saw a monarch and a GF today, but neither one would sit still long enough for me to get a pic...I chased them around the yard for a while before this little one caught my eye. It wasn't too cooperative either!
One of numerous roosting clusters in the yard last night. A rough estimate - probably a couple of hundred monarchs in the yard each day this week, mainly nectaring on the "Miss Huff" lantana, as well as others.
Dallas County Lepidopterists' Society
Beautiful pics. J and Russell. I agreed with Russell, I myself, have never seen the Hairstreaks with open wings. Didn't know there are more beauty to those beauties. lol. I continue to see Sulphurs and an occasional Monarch here and there. Brazillian skippers (I think). Awww, I hope the Brazillian Skippers are done (with their breeding season), for I'm getting ready to cut down my tattered cannas (thanks to them critters -- lol). The truth to be known. I didn't have the heart to cut down the Cannas earlier for I saw that they; the caterpillars were busy-ing rolling the leaves and descimated the plants. Grrrrrrr!!!!
Love the picture of the buckeyes jmorth! Wish I had more of them around, too few and far in between.
Still tagging some monarchs. Catzgalore (Stephanie) brought me three chrysalis to the RU today and one emerged. I just happened to have my tagging stuff with me so we tagged the female reared and released! It was her first to raise! Neither one of us thought to bring a camera. The new girl hung out on plant nearby all afternoon and flew away shortly before we left. The other two should emerge in the morning.
I raised a few earlier Lily, but when they eclosed they were not viable. Two couldn't fly and one never got out of the chrysalis. It was sad...had to put them down. They either had OE or had be parasitized I guess.
So it was definately a blessing to see the chrysalis that Catz brought to me. The other two look like they will eclose this morning!
I have had 2 monarch in my yard since yesterday afternoon. I guess that's why they call it a Waystation. :)
2 sleepy orange sulfurs eclosed yesterday too. I have one more cat, and she is half the size she needs to be to morph. Sheila - if your addy's in the exchange maybe I'll send you some sulfur chrysalises. :D
Had a White Angled-Sulphur (Anteos clorinde) in my yard yesterday. These guys are HUGE (around 3 inches) and so far about the only interesting stray to make it up to north Texas this year. They never sit still long and this one sipped on two types of lantana and a Mexican Flamevine before heading east. The photo here is one I took in 2008.
Dallas County Lepidopterists' Society
Amanda...Don't send the chrysalis, there are strict rules about mailing those. Neither one of us need to be arested for transporting them! LOL! Thanks for the thought though. I will have some eventually I am sure.
Super fantastic photos on the ready to emerge Sulphurs! Congrats Amanda, what's a wonderful accomplishment. Also serving as models for others. I'm heading over to the bugfiles soon to look for that lovely pic. again. How marvelous nature's handy work. Did anyone notice how the chrysalid mimic Autumn color leaves? Awes making wonder!
That's neat, Lily - hadn't thought of that aspect of mimicry. I think the chrysalis looks like a thorn hanging that way - I haven't seen any on the plant because I took all the larvae in, but I suspect they'd be completely invisible on that Cassia out there.
We're supposed to get more rain tomorrow. That's okay - my rain barrels are empty and need to fill 'em up. Even tho' temps are cooler that sun is still hot. Love love love the garden in October. I think it's nature's way of trying to cheer me.
I had some catching up to do since I was gone all last week camping. Jmorth that Buck-eye is really a striking butterfly...never see those here that I recall, but I know I've seen them somewhere before. Dale the sulfur is really neat, and what a nice close up shot.
I was camping not too far from here at Wekiwa Springs and there was a bunch of wonderful wildflowers there, and they were just booming with some of the biggest butterflies I've ever seen. I was in HEAVEN standing amongst them in the middle of the field just watching them fluttering all around me.
I'm not sure of the ID of all of them but maybe you can all help me out...so I can post in the BUG files. :)
This one was so beautiful and like I said really big a good four inches, the blue so bright...I had to really zoom in since it wouldn't come real close to me like some of the others. Help with ID?
Last but not least...my camera battery died right after this one...but it was the most beautiful and I'm glad I got it...much more blue than the others and the wing span had to be a good four plus inches...
Great pictures sunkissed. Your first looks like a pipevine to me, ...wrong it was the dark form TSTagain. Fool me everytime! Then you have seven pictures of Tiger STs, one being the dark form. Can't be sure on the others, but looks like the first sulphur pic is a mating pair! Maybe Lepfarmer, Mellie, or MsEd can id definately for you.
From the first of your photos: Female dark form Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Gulf Fritillary, mating pair of Cloudless Sulphur (male top, female hanging down), next two are E. Tiger Swallowtails, another Cloudless Sulphur (male), Palamedes Swallowtail, dark form female E. Tiger Swallowtail, next four are also E. Tiger Swallowtails -- with the last being a nice shot of a light form female. Great pictures! And I want that plant!
Dallas County Lepidopterists' Society
Thanks so much for the ID Dale and Shelia...I can now post the pictures in the right places. Dale that plant is really a striking flower, they stand out as far as the eye can see. There was also Summer farewell, blazing star everywhere, yellow buttons, beautiful dog fennel, goldenrod...but the butterflies loved the Florida paintbrush the most. I've seen those growing on the side of the Interstate also.
Thanks Dale, I just can't get those straight! But I don't do it for a living like you do my friend!
I am with Dale Sunkissed...we need that plant around here. If you send Dale some seeds after he gets it going on his property he will share.
I see you have already posted your picture of the plant in PF too! http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/54612/
One thing I noticed on another plant site it said part shade and on DG it says full sun. It looked like your picture would be full sun ...right?
They were in full sun, maybe some scattered pines here and there, but none in full shade at all. I plan on going back...it is a state park...so seed snatching not allowed...but some might stick to me as I walk through them. ;--)...nothing was seeding just yet.
Amanda do you have in idea when they will start seeding, they seemed to be just coming out and I plan a day trip over there, but cost six bucks to go in, so timing will be the key.
I'll be glad to mail anyone any if I can get some...ya know to stick to my sweater.
The rules say not to molest the plants or animals...is seed snatching considered molesting? LOL. I could see me getting on the news as a plant molester.☺
Well I looked it up and not on Florida's endangered or protected...so they won't throw my in jail.
Looks like the plant won't go to seed until December...but I really can't find information on it. I have the most perfect place where all my natives go and thrive.
Amanda can you share where to get the seeds?
Sherri - I'm afraid the source is just some poor hapless butterfly aficionado like the rest of us who happened to post photos of the plant on his blog. I reviewed his page and ventured an email to him. Like some of our DG folks he grows some natives for sale at home, but not this plant species. He said he leaves it to the bigger nurseries to propagate and sell. He told me if I would send a SASE and an email reminder in "about a month" he would be glad to send me some seeds from plants he has growing in his garden.
When collecting seed in the "wild" not only with regard to IUCN status, I would look at the site and be sure that I am not taking all the seed from all the plants. Especially if it's not particularly widespread in the area.
As Sheila suggested, I will be sure to get some to Dale so he can grow a bumper crop for the rest of us. Don't forget to poke and prod me in a month to remind my new internet friend. I put it on my calendar to remind myself.
Thanks Amanda, jokes aside, I have full respect for the conservation of our natural habitats and would never do anything to harm them. My only goal is to preserve all we have left in this world that nature gives us.
I'll mark my calendar also.
I went for a hike two days ago in the fields I was in camping a couple weeks back. Most the Liatris is going to seed, but a few showed their bright lilac colors here and there. All they yellow buttons and summer's farewell are gone to seed. The Florida paintbrush is still there and some are starting to fade, but none gone to seed yet. Not so many butterflies this time, but I did see a few Gulf Frits and E. Swallowtails...and lots of bees.
Not sure what the new flowering bush is with the light lilac blooms, looks a lot like the Florida paintbrush crossed with Liatris, but the BF's and bees loved it.
Had 4 chrysallises left on the porch that we forgot about until we had this recent warm spell--DD found this beauty flying around the porch--don't hold out much hope for it's survival, but we released it anyway.
Yesterday, while DH and I took a brief walk. I spotted this GF in the wild. Just for the record, we dodged a killing frost just the preceeding morning. Temp. was in the low 30'ish F. I still see an occasional Sulphur here and there. Bruce, hope those migrants made the journey. Life is tough out there in the wild.
Ha ha...I finally found it...started to think you were playing games and there was no BF...had a son that loved "Where is Waldo"...so I got pretty good at finding hidden items in photos.
I even have monarch eggs on my milkweed again, but the last ones were gone after a couple days of hatching...I think it is the ants that might eat them. I don't have much hope for the two eggs I see now. However I have had cats that made it all the way before.
That reminds me to go and look for some casia seeds in the wild, Sheila. I saw one in blooms during the summer, I need to return to the spot and finding some seeds. Hope the weather has let off some where you're. Best wishes.
Yes, the sulfurs are darty and hard to catch in a photo so I was pleased to see this one. What's amazing is the difference in color on the underside of the wings you see in the photo you posted in the leaves and the top of the wings which is a dazzling yellowy-orange!
I looked yesterday and there were still 2 chrysalises left. They are exposed (1) on a stick; and (2) on the screened lid of its container in a raised bed in my neighbor's front yard. There they receive direct sun from about 11 a.m. - dark. As I mentioned, sun and temperature had a direct impact on eclosure rates so I hoped with "the season" waning that they'd get out as fast as possible!
One had already started to change colors. The last one (on the stick) was the last to morp so that one may take a little longer.
Will check tomorrow. I had a busy day and did not get to look at all. It was over 70 degrees here today and enjoyed every minute of it!!! :)
Have a pleasant evening.
p.s. I'd love to get some seed of the native Cassia marilandica! I'll bet it would do better/bloom faster here than the tropical variety (C. alata) I tried to grow here. I let it go to the frost the other night. Too many unknowns at this point to try and dig that mother up. ;)
I've zone envy here Russell. I don't get to see as many butterflies here. Yesterday, however I and DH saw this Common Buckeye (?) on our stroll. Today I saw a passer-by Monarch. Yes, a Monarch-- but it didn't stop for nectar-- but just passing by. Sorry I didn't recognize the last butterfly you posted. Hope someone will chime in soon.
Russell, I think that is a common checkered-skipper. If you go to the lepfarmer's site and click on the left side under "What's on the wing" there is usually pics of all the butterflies that are being found flying in N TX at that time. Some are in your area also. Very good place to start when trying to id.
Nice pic sunkissed - I miss having those! I haven't had any monarch or queen cats this fall, despite the yard being swarmed by them. There are several milkweed assassin bugs camped out on both varieties of MW I have. I wonder if they are killing the cats. I had a problem with wasps earlier in the year and caught several of them eating cats right off the plant.
Hey! Lily -way to go on your first (?!) sighting. I know you've been passed over this year. :/
Sheila - hope to take a look at those links before next season. All the more motivation to take and protect as many as you can. I have to laugh at myself when I think about what a lame hobby this has become. A slave to a bunch of bugs.
Hope everyone's had a great weekend. I got together with some DG friends not too far away and had a lovely pre-Thanksgiving dinner.
Ooops - right Lily. My BF said he saw a sulfur yesterday. I was away for the weekend and have to go across the street to check if my last chrysalis eclosed. Then I will need advice on how to overwinter the BSW cats in this mesh box I have! One or two have already fallen from their stirrups, but 2 years ago when I had my first overwinter, she surprised me by crawling out from the closet on the floor after I thought I had lost her when she fell from the stick she'd attached to.
Your first "Small Sulphur" is a Lyside Sulphur (Kricogonia lyside). The next is a Large Orange Sulphur (Phoebis agarithe). The battered sulphur is another Lyside (nice shot!). And the skipper is a female Tropical Checkered Skipper (Pyrgus oileus).
Sheila: Perfectly normal to find some monarchs in our area that are continuing to breed through October and even early November. Quite doubtful that most of them will be heading to Mexico, though. Monarchs in my yard the past week or ten days or so are showing no signs of moving south, even after cold fronts move through. Natural selection at work...
Dallas County Lepidopterists' Society
Russell that is an amazing catch of the assassin bug eating a bee. I've never seen the assassin bug in my garden. Here the problem is mostly with ants and wasp. The little inch long one above..gone...something got it. That is the largest I saw a cat get this year. I do miss the years I used to see them get full sized. Haven't see that in a few years now.
I was reading hummers and lady bugs also will eat the eggs. Doesn't see to be a chance out there for them.
Still enjoying Gulf Frits, Monarchs, sulphurs, and skippers daily. Haven't see anymore swallowtails this past week.
I'm thankful there is a small group of us here that share same love for the outdoor and wildlife. Happy Thanksgiving Bruce, Amanda, Sheila, Marna, Dale, Nan, sunkissed and everyone that visits this forum. ^_^
I sent an email this evening and received a prompt reply from the gentleman who volunteered to share FL Paintbrush seed. He said he was going to collect some this weekend and he would get back to me afterwards. I now have his addy to send my SASE. I should send a giant bubble envie, yes? :D
I will let you know when I hear back. If I get more than 10-20 seeds, there may be more to share than just those sent to Dale to propagate for the rest of us. ;)
Have a good night/great weekend. I will be around and not entertaining (but being entertained!!!) so I will check in to let you know if I see any butterfly activity.
And I'm glad you volunteered me, too, Sheila! And I'm glad that Amanda is pursuing this -- looks like a great butterfly plant for all of us to have in our gardens. Even if I can only get a few plants going, those will eventually make seeds, and so on and so on...
Hope everyone has a wonderful thanksgiving day. While you're preparing this morning for the big feast, I'll be putting plastic over the last of the greenhouses. Once that's done I'm off to a family gathering and intend to eat like a p.i.g. hog.
Dallas County Lepidopterists' Society
Enjoy Dale! My family is coming tomorrow because of work scheldules etc. I have been cooking today in preparation so my pig day is tomorrow!
I am still seeing Monarchs flying around the yard two or three today, and wasn't out looking! This is the first time I can remember having flowers in bloom at Thanksgiving. I am sure that will end in the coming weeks.
As of the very early morning after Thanksgiving, there is one sulfur chrysalis left in a sheltered spot in my neighbor's front yard. This was the last to go thru the process, and I had to coax him/her to do that.
It has turned a bit orange which has been the harbinger of eclosure, but it's not going anywhere fast. We are still having 60 deg. temps in the daytime and night temps vary, but we have only had 1 night of hard frost. Crazy critters.
Still - no one has replied to my new thread about overwintering BST chrysalis. You all could weigh in over there, but you folks in TX and FL prolly have no experience with this. :D
Here is a link I found. http://www.joyfulbutterfly.com/articles/overwinter-chrysalis.html
Since it is turning colors it may be too late to try to over-winter in the fridge. Your temps are about like ours right now, and I am still seeing sulphurs flying. I think Dale said that they find leaf litter or shelter even as adults then emerge in the spring and fly.
I had a cloudless sulphur hatch on Thanksgiving. We brought it in from outside on the empress candle plant. I missed it eclosing, but saw it shortly after. I saw several new visitors on Thanksgiving too.
I had some catching up to do and will head over to the new link but wanted to say Yakmon wonderful photos. Thanks Shelia for that link, very informative.
Amanda great news on the FL paintbrush. I hope you get your seeds...it is a wonderful butterfly magnet. It grows very well in Central FL sandy soils.
Anyway now over to the new thread...hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.