After Grieving/Aggravating over the videos and photos and written reminisces (the most poignant for me? The cell phone calls that that Hero of Heroes made with his wife, he on Flight 93) of 9/11 this morning, choosing what to post led me to this image. A Whirlabout Skipper Butterfly met at Ft. Federica on St,. Simons Island, on the Georgia coast.
He was so set on guarding this, his perceived territory, thankfully allowing me to make my patented, low approach. Perhaps he knew that I am a good guy, that I see what is well and good and sound for his Island and for the USA, and perhaps he watches my sometimes remarked movement, a combo of necesaary cockiness/bravado on those street of Brooklyn, a diff walk in the artillery and later as an artillery officer, and the walk I hybridized as a New York City high school teacher and Dean for Boys (remember those incorrigible boys of your day (guns, knives, chukka sticks and such)).
I stood there, liking his moxie, playing imaginary scenarios of him, and this morning, silly as it made sound, his pose, all 1/6 of an ounce of him (?) talks to me. On this 9/11/20, I want us to remain a solid, ethical, moral, law-abiding and fair USA. I’ve watch America coalesce over the last few years, and it is so what I wanted my entire adult life.
Jeff, on 9/11 . . . . Sharing this guy, this Whirlabout Skipper, maybe the first I’ve ever seen, didn’t see them up north.
That Jamestown Audubon Center (renamed the Audubon Community Nature Center) meadow dished-up many butterflies, not the least this Least Skipper nectaring on Orange Hawkweed blooms. Know that this delicious occurrence triggered a flow of analogies in this man’s mind, including the tale that this little brave Skipper butterfly was boldly heading into the fiery furnace that led into the earth’s very core. Hey, my mind remains inventive and our butterflies over and over again spark new and ever changing fantasies.
Far western New York State, actually very far from New York City and Long Island, where few seem to have an appetite for the tasty treats offered up by wingedbeauty.com.
Anyone ever seen this one? Few appear to have ever seen a Leonard’s Skipper. I met this one because one year, well into September, I wondered. What would I meet at Raccoon Creek State Park‘s Doak Meadow/Nichol Road trail?
That morning, on a trail cut through the high grass of Doak Meadow, I was startled (Yes!) to watch this large skipper fly out from the high grass and fly to rest on the cut grass floor of the trail? Excited does not enough describe my reaction to this unexpected reward for heading out the Raccoon Creek State Park, when y’all had already headed back to work, school and to all that folks do when summer ends and life returns back to normal.
Glassberg’s A Swift Guide to the Butterflies of North America describes Leonard’s as LR-U (Locally Rare to Uncommon) and notes that in western Pennsylvania it flies from late August to September.
In Pennsylvania, September weather quickly cools off, and butterflies soon disappear. Leonard’s eludes most of us, for you’re back at your desk, shuttling your kids to school and oboe lesson and back to doing your research or continuing to work on your doctoral work.
Me? I was retired, and I think this was after my Frieda A”H passed, and I needed this, alot.
We saw many Silver Spotted Skippers yesterday, as we went ‘shopping’ for perrenials at Nikki’s Dig and Design Nursery in rural Lizella, just east of Macon, Georgia. Nikki’s nursery featured thousands of perrenials, almost all nurtured and grown by her and her staff. Strong, healthy and robust plants that would do a fine job of bringing butterflies to your garden. I kept thinking yesterday, that YOU would find much that you are looking for, these last months, right there on Causey Road.
What’d we buy? Bronze Fennel. Turtlehead, Cardinal Flower, an Agasatache, Coneflowers, Blue Lobelia, Black and Blue Salvia and an Orchid (a houseplant). She had mature plants in the nursery beds that you would Love, and that would bring exquisite butterflies to you.
These 2 Silver-Spotted Skippers are where they want to be, perched on blooms (Teasel) that pump out tasty nectar, both compelled to fulfill their responsibility to produce a new, vital generation. They were at Raccoon Creek State Park in southwestern Pennsylvania. Living in Georgia now, I miss that state park, where I’d seen Goatweed Leafwing, Leonard’s Skipper, White-M Hairstreaks, Meadow Fritillaries, Compton’Tortoiseshell, Hickory and Banded Hairstreaks, Northern Pearly-Eye Butterflies and . . . .
True Confession? Many of the Skipper Butterflies are so similar, that even now, their identity eludes me. Take this one for example. I found it at Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge in Maryland. This Refuge is very close to Chesapeake Bay, and its flora and fauna are vibrant and robust. It’s a bit more than an hour’s drive from Washington DC.
So, after working through Glassberg’s A Swift Guide to Butterflies, I offer that this one is a . . . Broad-winged Skipper, perhaps the only one I’ve ever seen. It was a bit large for a Skipper and was found near their preferred habitat, tidal marshes.