3.25.2010

Flutterbys

Some butterflies get up close and personal like this holly azure. It found my boot attractive for some reason and came to me.
 
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Other butterflies require that you make a spectacle of yourself like this Henry's Elfin. Elfins are small, mostly brown butterflies that one can easily lose track of on the ground. This requires that one stare intently at the spot one observed the butterfly go to ground. Alas, it is not immediately apparent to passersby that one is actually observing something thus generating odd looks...but I guess it does look odd to see a person stretched out on the ground staring intently at what appears from a distance to be nothing.
 
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11 comments:

Randy Emmitt said...

Beautiful little gems. We get Spring "Summer Azure" here as well as Spring Azures. We have a colony of Henry's Elfins and once in a while we find Eastern Pine Elfins too. Maybe next week they will be seen.

Hugh said...

I think the azure thought the pale seam of your boot was bird poop. I've seen azures nuzzling up to bird poop.

As for lying on the ground and staring at things, yes.

Woodswalker said...

Yes, stretching out on the ground looks odd, but that's where the good stuff is. Like your wonderful butterflies. Unfortunately, some bad stuff lives down there as well. Like ticks.

ksdoolittle said...

Bird poop. Funny Hugh. I certainly can relate to the odd stares as one stretches out on the ground looking at apparently nothing! That's kind of half the fun! ~ks

swamp4me said...

Randy,
We've had a fair number of butterflies out for the past week and a half -- zebra swallowtails, tiger swallowtails, anglewings, elfins, loads of holly azures and the occasional American snout all come to mind. It is so nice to see them fly again. Now, if the odes will just make an appearance I'll be a happy camper ;)

hugh,
You may be right. Azures do seem to have a taste for bird poop and carrion. And somehow I knew you'd understand about the lying on the ground thing...

Woodswalker,
Funny you should mention ticks -- I collected 27 off my pants leg yesterday. Luckily none made it onto or into my skin!

karen,
Makes you feel sorry for the folks who don't see the things we do and would never think of stretching out on the ground just to get a picture of an insect :)

jason said...

Huh. Being in odd positions staring at apparent nothingness, and it generates strange looks from passersby. Sounds very familiar!

You put a huge smile on my face, Swampy.

biobabbler said...

That's a riot.

Made me realize I did this last week when for SOME reason a blue allowed me to get VERY close while it rubbed it's wings together. It didn't even OCCUR to me I looked odd until I read your post. Everyone else was taking pictures of flowers...

=)

swamp4me said...

jason,
At least we are all in good company!

biobabbler,
Maybe we should all wear t-shirts with "Photographing insects" written on the back ;)

Joy K. said...

My husband will ask, while I'm lying facedown in a pile of leaves, "Looking FOR something, or looking AT something?

JSK said...

Looks like Spring Azures are out and about all over at the moment. Fascinating that this one landed on your boot. Was your boot moist? Most of the azures I've seen so far this year have been after moisture.

Am envious of your elfin. I saw a small brown butterfly this afternoon - about elfin size. I followed it (without a camera) for a little while but it was late afternoon and in the shade. Will have to keep my eyes open. Might be my lucky year.

swamp4me said...

joy k.,
Hahaha...if you're like me, the answer to that question would be both!

JSK,
My boot wasn't particularly moist, but the azure had been on the ground puddling. As for the elfin, I missed them completely last year. This year I have seen a fair number out and it's always a treat to observe one up-close.