Tropical Leafwing Treat

Tropical leafwing butterfly photographed by Jeff Zablow at the National Butterfly Center, Mission, TX

More than 20 years of wanting to photograph a Goatweed Leafwing butterfly, without a single image to my name. I’ve seen Goatweeds, in Pittsburgh and in the Mississippi Delta, but yes, not a single image.

This was a Happy! shock to me, when Nancy and John pointed out this Tropical Leafwing, she not too distant from our trail at the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas. She did fly from one perch to another, but she at least gave my minutes each time to s-t-r-e-t-c-h as far as I safely could to shoot her.

I shoot Fuji Velvia slide film, this 100 ASA for less than sunny locales. My film is wonderful for real-time color, and this is a fine example of the rich, deep, satisfying color of our butterflies. She was just as striking in appearance as you see here.

Don’t always agree with their political leanings, but truth be told, the National Butterfly Center attracts butterflies that you never, never forget!

Jeff

N.B., I plant Alabama Crotons in my Georgia garden, just in hope of attracting those elusive Goatweed Leafwings, they very native to Georgia.