Great Spangled Fritillary

Great Spangled Fritillary butterfly photographed by Jeffrey Zablow at Raccoon Creek State Park, PA

Umm! I’m overdue. Our 2 shih tzus and black russian need to go out for their walks. But out the window its dull, gray, slushy and slippery. So I’m putting it off until they signal, now or never! Opening this image in our queue: Up comes this satisfying shot = Summer! You’ve just got to pause and visually drink it in. Don’t ski, toboggan, sled. Skin on my hands gets really challenged by the below freezing winters of Pittsburgh (No this is my home, so that’s that).

You already know that some of my images aren’t as close-up as others share, but I think our color here is good, real-time, and the plant life shared looks real, and not blah! She is motionless on a gravel trail in Raccoon Creek State Park, one of the many beautiful state parks in western Pennsylvania. That puts us about 400 miles due west, and a little bit south of New York City.

This morning I opened a new Robert Michale Pyle book, and after the last several terrific butterfly reads, this all has begun bringing my blood to a low boil. Look again at this image. How nice it will be to again share the trail with Speyeria cybele. Today is December 9th. Where are they now? They are present in your yards, parks, schoolyards and refuges. Where? They are hidden caterpillars, hidden in the leaf litter. When you watched your neighbor rake up the leaves last month in their large yard . . . good chance they were raking up some potentially eye-catching butterflies (or what would have been butterflies). Man and butterflies . . . sometimes they . . .

It is my hope to travel a bit in 2014, to photograph, and share Regals, Diana’s, butterflies of the Keys, Texas’ much raved about Mission, Tx area, and Newfoundland. If you like, look at our last post. I need your eyes and ears and boots. Thanks.