Butterflies That Don’t Look Like Butterflies
In the last few weeks butterflies have become a lot more common, especially during warm late spring afternoons. To the casual observer some don’t even look like butterflies.
Below are some seen recently where there’s no question what they are.
The very small Banded Hairstreak, (Donna).
Another very small butterfly, the Summer Azure, (Donna).
Hackberry Emperors are a very common medium size butterfly that shun flowers but on a warm day will often land on your skin.
The Eastern Tiger Swallowtail is a large butterfly that’s easy to spot and usually easy to get a picture of.
The profile of the medium size Eastern Comma is a bit confusing but in flight there is no mistaking it for anything but a butterfly, (Donna).
But then there are some where we’re not quite sure, a moth, butterfly, or something else?
The Silver Spotted skipper is one of the largest of the skippers and for that reason fairly easy to spot. It is a fast flier not floating like the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail. Habitat: Disturbed and open woods, foothill stream courses, prairie waterways. Range: Extreme southern Canada and most of the continental United States except the Great Basin and west Texas; northern Mexico. http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org
The Zabulon Skipper is very small, common but easy to miss. Habitat: Brushy openings near moist forests and streams. Range: Massachusetts west through southern Michigan to central Kansas; south to central Florida, southern Louisiana, and northeast Texas. Strays to New Mexico, South Dakota, and southern Quebec. A separate population ranges from central Mexico south to Panama. http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org
Two very small and seldom seen Crossline Skippers. Habitat: Open grassy areas including prairies hills, barrens, power line cuts, old fields, forest openings. Range: Western North Dakota east across central Minnesota, southern Ontario, and southern Quebec to central Maine; south to northeast Texas, the Gulf Coast, and northern Florida. http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org
A Peck’s Skipper on a dandelion. A very small fury butterfly. Habitat: Many open grassy habitats including meadows, prairies, lawns, marshes, landfills, roadsides, vacant lots, and power line right-of-ways. Range: British Columbia east across southern Canada to Nova Scotia; south to northeastern Oregon, southern Colorado, northwest Arkansas, and northern Georgia. http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org
And then there’s this rather unusual specimen.
American Snout, Habitat: Forest clearings and edges, thorn scrub, brushy fields, roadsides.
Range: Argentina north through Mexico and the West Indies to southern United States. Migrates to central California, southern Nevada, Colorado, and most of the eastern United States. http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org
While fascinating it’s not clear what purpose the snout serves, (Donna).
Given that many butterflies are very small and some fly very fast it can be a challenge to spot them. However once spotted, they transport one into a world that few visit and get to appreciate.
Thanks for stopping by.
I take my hat off to your butterfly photographs. They are very tricky subjects.
When it comes to butterflies my wife seems to be better at getting up close and personal.
I’ve seen many of these but those small ones are hard to get photos of, so you did well!