Coastal salt marshes and coastal salt pans! There I was with Nancy and John on the beautiful Georgia coast, in Shellman Bluff, then at Brunswick, and later to Jekyll Island. Shooting butterflies, gently aided by extraordinary butterfly spotters. Our conversations brought mentions of their field work in North America and Central America. Panama, who can imagine seeking the birds of Panama?
My primary objective on this 4-day trip? Eastern Pygmy-Blue butterflies. The smallest butterfly in the United States.
I am pleased to share this dorsal view of an Eastern Pygmy-Blue. My captures of ventral looks will be shared, but it’s this one that most pleases me. As with that other tiny recently shared, the Little Metalmark butterfly, photographing this Eastern Pygmy Blue required that I got down, down and further down. Their hostplants are diminutive, and the flowers that they visit are tiny themselves and on tiny plants.
I will never forget these little sweeties. Earnest to shoot them on Jekyll Island, I forgot. Forgot that the south harbors ticks, ticks that are vectors for Bad Diseases. I saw a beaut, and quickly got down to the ground, laying my body down. I shot away, Pop! pop! Pop! We all had a Super! day that day, and hours later, back in Shelllman Bluff, I prepared to shower, and There It Was!!! A tick adhered to my upper chest. John used forceps to carefully remove it . . . and Yes, a large red circle developed, quickly! Consensus was to watch that Ugly red blotch, and wait. I did. Returned to Eatonton. Almost a week later, no fever (Thank G-d!), no other signs of . . . Lyme Disease. But it was till a Red Circle, size of the c and forefinger make together.
Went to an Urgent Care facility in Eatonton, and the PA took blood, examined me, and shared that she thought I was lucky, and did not contract that dreaded disease. Time has gone by since then, and no sign of a problem.
Y’all think photographing lions and elephants and grizzlies is risky, then try shooting Eastern Pygmy-Blue butterflies. Urgent Care visits and ansy waiting for something bad.
I like this image, especially those orange-tipped antennae, and that comely yellow-brown color.
Fun, friends and angst, shooting the tiniest of them all.