When You See A Rare One In The HolyLand

Nordmannia Myrtale butterfly photographed by Jeffrey Zablow at Mt. Hermon, Israel

Eran Banker was my guide, who went with me to the top of Mt. Hermon, in the HolyLand ( Israel ). Israel on the south face of the mountain, Syria on the north face. Why? More than 10 species of butterfly are found on that mountain peak, but no where else. That really enticed me. Eran lugged liters of water that 95F day, and we spent many hours up there, in full, unrelenting sun.

Did we see ’em? Yes, I saw many rare, Protected Species. Not a one nectared peacefully on those sparse little blooms up there. All flew in fast, nectared faster, and left just as quickly. I was unable to photograph many, trying to negotiate large rock . . . and later, a bit shaken when Eran called me over to show me a landmine, lurking there for decades. Landmines? set just where the butterflies fly. Hmmm.

I tell you, seeing and being able to shoot Protected Species is a very satisfying experience. You pause after, to applaud yourself for your great success, and soon you dwell on how privileged you have been to have met such a rare winged beauty.

Our female Nordmannia myrtale evoked such joy and introspection. It flew in, landed on that flat leaf, and happily suffered my cautious approach.

Me, the street kid from Brooklyn, on the peak of Mt. Hermon, with G-d’s winged gems . . . .

Jeff

8 Years And No ID On This Moth

Moth photographed by Jeffrey Zablow at Mt. Hermon, Israel

What you remember amidst all that you forget. It’s been 8 years since this moth flew toward where I was standing, on the peak of Mt. Hermon. The south face of Hermon is war ravaged Syria, just to add some spicy irony to this setting.

It’s not a butterfly, yes, but the peak of this mountain supports many very rare butterflies, and I thought, Hey! this might be a very rare moth! So I shot away, that June 2008. You see my image of this beautiful creature.

wingedbeauty.com posted this photo, asking for ID from our moth experts.

Nothing.

Of course I try one more time. Anyone able to ID this Middle Eastern moth? found on top of Mt. Hermon?

Jeff

Nordmannia Myrtale ( Mt. Hermon )

Nordmannia Myrtale butterfly photographed by Jeffrey Zablow at Mt. Hermon, Israel

I take great pleasure from this photo. I hired a guide, we drove up to the Golan ( Israel ) and I kept my wits about me as we took the lift up, 7,000 feet, to the peak of Mt.Hermon. Managing my reluctance to scale heights wasn’t a picnic, but I did it.

The peak of this giant mountain, at the northeastern reaches of Israel, was not what I expected. The peak was enormous, and somewhat flat. The temperature reached the mid-90’s that June day. Eran toted many liters of water. We saw butterflies, many species of very rare butterflies. Eran spotted that very evil looking land mine, and during the later half of the day up there, I stayed mostly on those ancient trails that cross here and there.

The view of Syria, down the north face of the mountain, was picturesque and serene. Today? Down there today, Syria, is rated the Most Violent place in the world today.

This tiny Lycaenidae butterfly, Nordmannia myrtale is Protected, a very rare butterfly that few have ever seen. I saw it, and that pleases me, Truth be told.

Jeff

“The Most Dangerous Place . . . . “

Cow Grazing on Mt. Hermon photographed by Jeff Zablow at Mt. Hermon, Israel

Chilling. I just read that this serene, picturesque landscape is no more. I was there in June of 2008. Frieda A”H passed away in January of 2008. Rachel left her SEC job that same month, and emigrated to Israel. She joined a large CPA firm there, in Tel Aviv. I visited to see her, see family there, and find rare butterflies on the peak of Mt. Hermon. At the northernmost extreme of the Golan Region, Mt. Hermon boasts as many sas 12 species of butterflies that can be found nowhere else in the world.

I hired Eran Banker, a guide, and off we went. Rode the cable car up to the top, a HuGe show of guts, for I am very uncomfortable with heights, and 7,000 feet is very, very high. Eran is a big man, and he lugged liters of water for us up there, in sun 100% of the time, temperatures in the low 90’s, and drier than dry.

We found some of those very rare butterflies, many of those images shared here in wingedbeauty.com posts. Eran gave me a heads-up when he called me over, and showed me a very scary looking land mine, in an area on the peak that I was working, in my search for butterflies. Chilling! Waiting since the Six Day War for?

We also saw cattle browsing on the peak, cattle owned by Syrians at the base of the northern side of Hermon. This hefty bovine is calmly seeking desirables amid the rock strewn peak. Huh? I looked at them, they looked at us, and went on munching.

The background you see is Syria. Minutes before I began this post, I read that it’s brimming with Syrian army and irregulars, Syrian rebels, Iranian army regular, Iranian irregulars, Russian advisors and technicians (and ?), Hezbollah terrorists, North Korean technical advisors, Pakistani technical advisors, U.S. technical advisors and special forces and who know who else, is “the most dangerous place in the world” now.

2008 and my search for butterflies on Mt. Hermon. 2018 and war, across the very same arid land that you and this cow can see. Will this merit your Comment?

Jeff