“Oh Baby You Know What I Like”

Phaon Crescent Butterfly 3 photographed by Jeff Zablow at Big Bend Wildlife Management Area, Florida

At the Big Bend Wildlife Management Area, in Florida’s Panhandle, who did we meet? Just as you’d hope, there was this Phaon Crescent butterfly. As soon as I saw those sweet cream colored bands on its fresh forewings, I knew this little beaut was a Phaon. The clincher was the abundance of its hostplant, Fogfruit, growing low on the trailside, close to the marshy, swampy Big Bend wetland.

What springs to mind, when this rock ‘n roller reminds of this happy sighting? The Big Bopper’s cannot be forgotten Hello Baby, You Know What I Like . . .

It’s fun to see such, and be obliged to determine, in a nanosecond, if you’ve met a Pearl Crescent, or a Phaon Crescent or a Texan Crescent or maybe, just maybe a Cuban Crescent butterfly. After all, it was the Florida Panhandle, and any or all might, just might be flying.

Jeff

Why Travel To the National Butterfly Center to See A Texan Crescent Butterfly?

Texan crescent butterfly (male) photographed by Jeff Zablow at the National Butterfly Center, Mission, TX

That visit? Amazing! Nancy, John and I travelled from Georgia to the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas. Standing there, just a mile or two from the border wall with Mexico? A never to be forgotten experience. I loved it. It was my first visit to the NBC. I was in a benign kind of shock. There we were, Christmas week, with temperatures sometimes in the low 90’s, and butterflies new to me there, and there, and almost . . . everywhere.

Yes I’ve seen much in my life, and travelled some. How many butterflies seen? Who knows? 200,000? This Texan Crescent, the Red Rim, that Erato Heliconian, the Mexican Bluewing, plus the Julia Heliconian, Fatal Metalmark, adds to those the Tropical Leafwing, a gorgeous Common Mestra . . . all the way to the world’s most beautiful Malachite butterfly and many Skipper butterflies new to me. I was in a state of euphoria not often enjoyed.

Back home, my family never opens these 900+ posts, friends don’t either and my last home, with its 2-year old 303 Garden, that was often a crowded freeway of butterflies, it never had a single person request to have a look at it. That I’m a seasoned guy now, helps, for I accept. Accept much. Nearly all possess no interest in all of this, are hardened to their milieu, their daily life spaces. Getting down to it, I sent kids to some of the USA’s ‘top’ schools, and now, they never visit here?

Why travel to see a Texan Crescent? This Texan Crescent? If you’re here, right here, I applaud you, and a gold star should definitely be issue/awarded to you, for you are 1) an Esthete and 2) one way or another appreciate the infinite beauty G-d has created.

Jeff

She’s the Sweetest Little Rosebud in Texas

Texan crescent butterfly (male) photographed by Jeff Zablow at the National Butterfly Center, Mission, TX

We saw quite a few of them in the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas, near the border wall. They fly low, and perch often. They were my first Texan Crescents. I took a liking to them.

I wanted to capture and share their rich coloration. This Texan female pretty much fits the bill.

Some say that are occasional migrants to my middle Georgia, though in these 4 years of visiting the Georgia Piedmont, I’ve never seen one.

It’s in my thinking to return to the Lower Rio Grande Valley late in 2019. I know where to stay, I’d rent a car, but I know of no one who will aid me in finding the hotspots there: Falcon Heights, Santa Anna National Wildlife Refuge, Edinburg Wetlands or Boca China/Rd 4?

Oh I cried so when I left her that it nearly broke my heart, and if I ever find her we never . . .

Jeff

Texan Crescent Butterfly

Texan crescent butterfly (male) photographed by Jeff Zablow at the National Butterfly Center, Mission, TX

She was one of many Texan Crescent Butterflies that we met in the National Butterfly Center in Mission, Texas near the border wall. Most of the other folks had seen these Texans many times before. Not me. Every one I saw, I approached, looking to see if he or she were fresh and complete.

I might have seen Texans before, in Mississippi or in the Florida Panhandle, but those encounters were brief and earned not a single exposure. This time I met them with certainty, and I can say that I was very excited to finally 100% meet these wingedbeauties.

Jeff, in the Lower Rio Grande Valley in December 2017, having FUN.

Jeff