The Middle East’s Danaus Butterfly

Plain Tiger butterfly photographed by Jeff Zablow at Mishmarot, Israel

Whenever a Monarch butterfly crosses my path, or flies into our garden, I go. Go to see it, almost go to greet it! As hundreds of thousands of you have, I have planted milkweed plants in my garden, knowing that even if some of you have limited space, you’ve set in milkweed in planting pots. When those Monarchs come, no matter what month it is, it is uplifting. Uplifting is healthy and much needed.

On my trip to Mission, Texas, a handful of miles from the Mexican border, those hundreds of Monarch-like butterflies, Queens and Soldiers, lit me up! I was as excited to see my 200th Queen as I was when we arrived in Mission. Monarchs, Queens and Soldiers are all Danaus butterflies, whose hostplants are Milkweeds.

When I travel to Israel my Danaus-love continues with this butterfly, the Plain Tiger. Found in the Middle East, it is the most elusive of the Danaus, difficult to approach and skittish when the camera appears.

It all goes back to Brooklyn, New York, when Monarchs showed up in the ’empty lots’ not empty at all, but just months or a handful of years before they were developed and . . . disappeared.

Jeff

Unchained Melody At The NBC

Monarch Butterflies Coupled photographed by Jeff Zablow at the National Butterfly Center, Mission, TX

He is closest to us. She is barely visible below. Monarchs coupled in the Perennial Gardens of the National Butterfly Gardens of the NABA in Mission, Texas. The largest Monarchs I have ever seen. A mere 2 miles or so from the Mexican border.

Me? Sitting here watching the rain, it 52 degrees Fahrenheit outside, in usually sunny Georgia.

What does this view make me sing in my mind, the lyrics to Unchained Melody, and those summer days on the beach at Arverne, Rockaway, Queens, New York: Oh My Love, My Darling, I Hunger For Your Touch. Time Goes By So Slowly And Time Can Mean So Much . . . Are You Still Mine? I Need Your Love, G-d Speed Your Love To Me.

Sure a trip to the National Butterfly Center is unforgettable . . .

Jeff

Monarchs That Bring Joy!

Monarch Butterfly, photographed by Jeff Zablow at Raccoon Creek State Park in Pennsylvania

We’re near the end of February here in middle Georgia, U.S.A.. Some days hit 60 degrees Fahrenheit, others struggle to reach 49 degrees. I’ve not seen a Monarch butterfly since very early November 2019.

Working through our wingedbeauty.com Media Library and I stopped here, at this enchanting image of a female Monarch, in our 303 Garden (our own yard). She has stopped to deposit eggs on our Milkweed (Asclepias  spp).

Just another image for me? No. No. No. What you’re seeing made me smile, instantly. Joy to my heart, seeing Monarchs, as I did  back in Brooklyn, New York, back then. She striving to insure that the next generation of Monarchs ecloses, whether it be then in East Flatbush section of Brooklyn or now, in beautiful Eatonton, Georgia.

Joy! is always good medicine. Monarchs bring Joy!

Jeff

Comment On This Monarch Head Spinner?

Monarch butterfly on Tithonia with intense blue sky, photographed by Jeff Zablow at Butterflies and Blooms in the Briar Patch Habitat I, Eatonton, GA

Taken in Virginia’s Butterflies & Blooms Briar Patch Habitat, we want to know what you think when you view it? Shot with Fuji Velvia ASA 50 film. Not PhotoShopped. A Fine Georgia day in the Piedmont.

Please do share what you think when you view this in mid-February?

What’s your thinking upon seeing this?

Do let all of us know, by completing a ‘Comment.’

Jeff . . . Who very much hopes to enjoy a Minimum of 20 ‘Comments.’

Those Huge Texas Monarchs

Monarch Butterflies Coupled photographed by Jeff Zablow at the National Butterfly Center, Mission, TX

My recollection is that beginning with those empty lots in East Flatbush Brooklyn, they awaiting the inevitable construction of new homes, and continuing here in Georgia’s Piedmont region in 2019, I have seen some 2,867 Monarch butterflies. That includes Monarchs seen in New York state, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maine, New Hampshire, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Ohio, Arizona, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Mississippi, Arizona, Missouri and Oklahoma.

When I saw this coupled pair of Monarchs, he seen here with wings spread, in the Perennial Gardens of the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas, these 2 Monarchs were the largest Monarchs I’d ever seen. She flew onto this Lantana plant first, and moments later he flew to her, with much force, and they joined bodies.

I stood there, wondering why these Texas Danaus Plexxipus individuals were so much larger than any I’d ever seen before??

Jeff