Duskywing on Blueberries

Duskywing butterfly photographed by Jeff Zablow at Raccoon Creek Park, PA, 5/06/08

You can’t not like Duskywing butterflies. These little brown bombshells are just about everywhere when you hike the woodland trails in the Spring. Every so often one will accompany you part way on a trail, flying 10 feet ahead of you each time you reach it, and repeating this again and again. Springtime also finds certain beloved plants in active bloom. Among those are wild blueberries. They evoke such warm memories and many recollections of mouth-watering blueberry muffins and . . . blueberry pies. Pause to regain my composure . . .

This sunny morning on May 6th AOTA (all of the above) were right before me in Nichol field in Raccoon Creek State Park (southwestern Pennsylvania = arrive at Kennedy Airport in NYC and drive your rental car 8.5 hours to the southwest). Juvenal’s Duskywing (Erynnis juvenalis) nectaring seriously on Lowbush Blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium).

An image that I sought for some time. Catching a good one seemed achievable, though each time I positioned myself, he would move to the next tiny bloom, and I’d have to refocus my macro lens.

This is one of those reminders of how crucial it is to conserve places like this. Duskywing butterflies, happily nectaring on blueberry bushes. Sweet. Naturally connecting the dots of happy memories.