Thursday, September 25, 2014

Brukner Nature Center Butterfly Transit, September 20, 2014

The weather is cooler now that Fall is here but by Saturday afternoon at 2 PM the temperature was in the low seventies (Fahrenheit).  That's warm enough for butterflies to fly.

I saw a Painted Lady on a Purple Coneflower as I walked up to the Interpretive Center.  The butterfly was still there when we started our walk so it was the first one on our list.

Butterflies were sparse.  We saw this bedraggled Eastern Tailed-Blue among the grasses in hedgerow between the parking lot and the amphitheater.  The orange spot was still on it though I couldn't see the thin hairlike tail.

We saw a few more Eastern Tailed-Blues at the meadow, a couple Painted Ladies, and this Pearl Crescent.

We saw a Sulphur  flying out in the middle of the meadow but I didn't get a photo of it.  It was too far off to count as being on the butterfly transit.

We looked hard along the drive as we headed back to the Interpretive Center but all we saw were acouple Cabbage Whites.

The season for butterflies in this area is closing down though we will continue to walk the transit until the end of October.

We have seen only one or two Monarchs all season.  Maybe there will be more next year.

Ruth is helping the Monarchs as much as she can by collecting milkweed seeds and scattering in any suitable habitat.  She is also raising and releasing Monarchs. She gets the larvae from a field near her house before the owners mow it.  She learned about raising Monarchs from her grandmother when she was a little girl and is continuing her grandmother's mission.

Before we left, Ruth showed us four Monarchs she had raised and also how she tagged them.  She is part of a group called Monarch Watch.  After tagging the butterflies, she released them.  Before they flew off, several landed for a few minutes on our shirts.

This photo was taken by Molly who works at Brukner.  I took the others since neither Phil nor Jim, our regular photographers walked with us.


  1. I have a cousin who collect larvae and raises Monarchs, I really should do that too. The numbers are down around here.
    Thought you might like to know I am taking a drawing class online using water color pencils...ran across it quite by accident on Facebook. I am printing out the lessons and doing them step by step:)

    1. It's good to hear from you. The watercolor pencil class sounds interesting. We've seen a few Monarchs in our yard this year. We didn't see any last year. Also saw two when Tom and I walked the dikes at Ottawa National Wildlife Reserve along Lake Erie. Did you hear about the huge flock of Monarchs that were tracked on the St. Louis Weather Radar a few weeks ago?