Southern Pearly-eye Butterfly with Cane

Southern Pearly-eye Butterfly, photographed by Jeff Zablow at Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge, Georgia

Rose and Jerry were spotting for me, in this dimly-lit Piedmont National Wildlife Swamp. It was difficult going, with each step either sinking in the soft terrain, or almost sending you, slipping and sliding.  Time and time again, it was an almost Plop! Onto your back. So many of the Southerns, Northerns, Creole Pearly-eyes, Gemmed Satyrs and Carolina Satyrs fled before I could respond to Rose’s or Jerry’s “Come look at this!”

This Southern Pearly-eye cooperated. Resplendent in its gentle colors, it was a treat to see it, among the canes and river oats.

August 2015, with the locally respected Paynes. Jeffrey, with the Satyrs. I was indeed a Happy Boy with extraordinary folks and exemplary butterflies in Georgia.


The Southern Pearly-Eye Butterfly and 99.987% of Americans

Southern Pearly Eye Butterfly photographed by Jeff Zablow in Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge, GA

It’s a fact, research shares that 99.987% of Americans, including those in Pennsylvania, know nothing of Southern Pearly-Eye butterflies. I’d be among them, save for the patience and kindness of Rose and Jerry, who guided me to them in the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge, in north central Georgia. It was the Piedmont swamp, with cane and river oats.

Why is this photograph so dark? My ASA 100 Fuji slide film was more than challenged by the limited light in that part of the swamp, overhung as it was by trees. I shoot only with available light, without flash added.

Enodia portlandia was very elusive. Rose or Jerry would give the call to come quick, Here’s a Southern! I’d hop over branches, through mud, nearly take a pratfall, only to find Oh, it took off.

I’m telling you, it was toooo much Fun! Just had my annual check-up this morning, and my PCP agreed that it looks like I got away without any of several serious diseases that have been contracted . . . In This Very Swamp. Think about that. Now, who’s ready to return with me in August, to this very spot? Raise your hands higher, ’cause I can’t ’em.


Piedmont Oats, Anyone?

River Oats and Spider photographed by Jeff Zablow in Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge, GA

Immersed in this Piedmont Swamp, Rose and Jerry were preoccupied, scouting out Satyrs for me. Noted earlier, the humidity on that August morning, in the swamp, I’d say was 193%. The footing was sloppy, lighting was reduced. Thankfully there were flying biters, but not as many as I had anticipated. Save for Carolina Satyrs, almost every plant and animal was new to me.

This was where I re-confirmed that Georgia spider webs tasted just the same as Pennsylvania web silk!  I had to keep up with Rose and Jerry, so didn’t have time to try them with ketchup . . .

Along came this plant, and I immediately knew it was new to me. I was sure that this must be oats, Rose confirmed it, River Oats. I had to capture them on film, as they were so new to me, and I had come so far for this formal introduction. I should not forget to direct your attention to the spider photograph that was patiently posted.

Georgia Piedmont Swamp, in the Piedmont National Wildlife Refuge. Life is good, for look where I went and who guided me!