Phil D. selflessly agreed to meet me at Hard Labor Creek State Park (Rutledge, Georgia, USA). He was a Park Ranger Naturalist, and friends had urged me to reach out to him, to see and shoot certain Georgia butterflies.
I was reluctant, for in my then home, Pennsylvania, only one person had ever invited me to see butterflies in habitat, ever (I think). Phil responded sure, when, what?
My list of butterflies I so wanted to see included this one, the Gemmed Satyr butterfly. You say “Gem?” and I’m all in. That goes back to Frieda A”H.
Faster than you can say, “I Love Georgia,” Phil and I reached a moderately treed area, and he was pointing out one, then another and another Gemmed Satyr. This one first flew to, and landed in a shady spot just inches above the ground. Then it flew to this nearby leaf and . . . posed. Posed for me. Wowwwww!
Years of wanting to see this one, as I had wanted to see Regal Frits, Giant swallowtails, Zebra Heliconians and Comptons, over, for here was one that topped the List. Private, hued in gorgeous browns, sporting that band of ‘jewels,’ this little flier stood there with fine posture, quite proud of itself, and I shot away.
Jeff and the Gemmed, happily confirming a meet-up that only 1 in 100,000 Americans have experienced!