Don’t You Love It When . . .

Banded Hairstreak Butterfly at Raccoon Creek State Park

This tiny Hairstreak butterfly charmed me when I discovered it on a trailside leaf in Doak meadow in Raccoon Creek State Park, southwest Pennsylvania. I knew it was a new one for me, a species of Hairstreak I’d never seen before. Just as good was its calm, unbothered response to my patented robotic approach. When you shoot Macro- you must be close, very close. Closer yet when your subject Hairstreak is as tiny as this.

Glassberg’s Swift Guide to Butterflies of North America revealed this beaut to be a Hickory Hairstreak (Satyrium caryaevorum) and cites it as “R-U” (Rare to Uncommon).

Our new home has 5 hickory trees in front, one of them the much beloved Pignut Hickory. Ach! Hickory Hairstreaks generally fly no further south than north Georgia, so we’ll probably never find one flying at our front door!

Don’t you love it when you’re on that trail, and you see a butterfly you’ve . . . never seen before! With our move to a new home now done (‘cept for lots of unpacking/planting) the coming weeks just energize me, Social Distancing assured, y’all.