The Brukner Nature Center's front entrance is in the process of being updated. All the plants we found butterflies on last year have been torn out. The good news is that more will be put in. Now, however, the lack of plants mean that we aren't seeing butterflies in an area where we usually find quite a few.
Our best sections for finding butterflies on May 1st turned out to be on the sections just beyond the meadow on the Hickory Ridge trail. There we saw seven Red Admirals.
We also saw four Eastern Commas in the same area.
Jim found this American Painted Lady (Vanessa virginiensis). They are similar to a Painted Lady (Vanessa cardui). Seeing the underside makes the identification easier.
The Henry's Elfins (2) were found flitting around the redbud blossoms just as they were on
April 24. This photo is from April 24.
Other butterflies that we saw were Cabbage Whites (4) and a Pearl Crescent.
The transit group attempted to monitor the trail on May 7 (Saturday) but it was not a good day for seeing butterflies...spitting rain, wind gusts, temperatures below 70 degrees Fahrenheit. The group gave up on counting butterflies. Nancy and Phil went out on Thursday, May 12, which was a nicer day. They found butterflies but they were elusive so Phil didn't get photos of them. They counted a Red Admiral, a Silver-spotted Skipper, a Pearl Crescent, 5 Cabbage Whites. In addition, two orange butterflies flitted by so fast, neither Nancy nor Phil got a good look at them.
However Phil did get these photos of turtles who live in Cattail Pond.
I'm not sure which turtle this is. I know Snapping Turtles live in the pond but there may be other species, too. I'm not sure the back is lumpy enough to be a Snapper.
I am reporting this on May 14. Neither today nor tomorrow will be a good day for counting butterflies. Today the high is predicted to be about 50 degrees Fahrenheit and there is a frost warning tonight. Weather forecasters are suggesting that delicate plants should be covered.
We have had a few nice spring days but many more days when May has felt like March. All of us are hoping for a few weeks of spring before the hot days of summer show up.