I look for them alot. Their males do challenge me, for ID’ing Skipper butterflies is somewhat difficult for me, to this day. When I come upon a female Zabulon Skpper, I’m doubly happy. No, make that triply happy.
I find the female Zabulons to be very beautiful, and this one is a good example. She has much to admire. Those purplish-blue spots on the trailing edges of her wings delight, the white spots and white border streak, all seen here, are handsome, the likable brown of her wings is a fav color of mine, and her right eye seen here bordered by white markings, that too is pretty.
Know too that when I meet a Zabulon butterfly, the coincidence of my name, Zablow, and Zabulon fascinates and kind of tickles me, it does.
She was busy nectaring on this sizable Thistle flowerhead in Raccoon Creek State Park in southwestern Pennsylvania, some 8 plus hours from the famous Brooklyn Bridge that spans Brooklyn and New York, New York (Manhattan).
They surprise. You’re seeing lots of Silver-Spotted Skippers through the morning, and you begin to disregard them. When you’ve reached complete and total disinterest in those Silver-Spotteds, every once in a long while, your senses unexpectedly discombobulate. Your brain signals that you’re now looking at a Silver-Spotted Skipper that’s not a Silver-Spotted Skipper. A bit flummoxed by that, you’re mental library quickly reconnects, and you have a ‘Boing!’ You’re looking an the ‘Uncommon’ Hoary edge Skipper Butterfly. That is a morning maker, it is.
That smudgy white on the trailing edge of its hindwing, as well as the broad golden band on the forewings, identifies this butterfly as a Hoary Edge. This one was seen at Raccoon Creek State Park in southwestern Pennsylvania. Here in Georgia I’ve seen them in my 303 Garden, in the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge, in the Butterflies and Blooms Briar Patch Habitat I in Eatonton and in the Ocmuolgee Mounds National Historic Site in Macon.
Don’t see them every day or every week, but when I do, Smile!
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.