Winter Antidotes III

Desert Orangetip Butterfly at White Tank Mountains, AZ
Disregard the slightly cold weather outside your door. It may be 9F this very moment in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, but, soon all that will change. Do you question me? What do I have to support that? Spring is on its way, have no doubt about it. The $800,000,000. industry that sends dozens of catalogs, catalogs offering myriad choices of perennials, seeds, bushes, vines, and trees began mailing their offerings at the stroke of midnight on New Years. They are not one to waste money. If you’re getting those catalogs, then Spring ’15 is on its way.

Examine this Winter Antidote. It was March, and central Arizona had above average rainfall January and February. The desert was abloom, seas of wildflowers, all exuberant because moisture was suddenly abundant. Me, I was there, visiting family and keen to get my camera to work. Temperature was in the mid-80’s F, comfortable for Arizona.

Whom did I meet, at White Tank Mountains Regional Park, none other than this Desert Orangetip butterfly (Anthocharis Cethura). Not all that surprising, because this beauty is known for making an appearance after winter rains. A common Arizona species? No. Considered uncommon and unpredictable. A desert butterfly of the southwestern corner of the U.S..

So linger here just one more moment. A desert butterfly, met in March, west of Phoenix. A precious gem of a flyer, enjoying near ideal conditions in a desert that for the moment defies the criteria of desert.

Nursery catalogs, longer days, desert butterflies flying anew. Spring will be here, in the East, soon. Jeff will take his macro- from his backpack, load his Fuji slide film (ASA’s 50/100), and G-d willing step onto Colorado, Georgia, Arizona, Illinois, Maine, Ontario and Israel. Hey, maybe even get to Dolly Sods and Buzzard Swamp. Seems I have some friends in fantastic places!

If you know that butterflies exist, then I tell you, Spring is a ‘comin!


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