Where are all the butterflies?

I keep looking, but rarely see one.  Are there fewer around?  Am I just having an unlucky year?  They are one of my favorite things to photograph and I’m just not seeing any.

Yesterday, I decided to swing by the community gardens at the local nature center.  I can walk to the gardens and love to visit them.  We have tried to have a vegetable garden in our yard, but we just don’t have enough sun.  The community gardens have vegetables, many native plants, a chicken coop, and a bee hive.  I love photographing the bees and other insects.  I don’t know what this guy with the blue wings is–any ideas?

 

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One day, I’d love to have a good macro lens.  It opens up a whole new world to photography.

 

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I was surprised when I viewed the picture above to find that little tiny bee (or wasp?, or insect?) in the frame.

On the way home, I took a quick photo of this juvenile House Sparrow.

 

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Finally, just as I was nearing home, I caught a glimpse of these berries.  I loved the variety of colors and started photographing them.  Then I noticed that perfect circle of light right behind them.  It was very dark in the woods, and I didn’t like the effect my on-camera flash gave.  So I ran home, grabbed my tripod, and tried again.  Although not as sharp as I’d like, I think the composition of this photo is interesting.

 

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It’s supposed to be a beautiful day today.  I’m hoping to get out for a bit and find more to photograph.  Have a wonderful Sunday!

 

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6 Responses to Where are all the butterflies?

  1. Rob Clark says:

    I think that is a ‘Digger Wasp’. Word on the street is that they don’t sting.

  2. Very interesting Rob!! I am allergic to a lot of bee species and of course, they intrigue me. I will have to look that up. Once again, awesome Carol!

  3. Try organ pipe mud dauber. Have you ever submitted to Bugguide.net? It is pretty easy to do after signing up. They are really good over there. The tiny bee is possibly a type of hover fly.

    We’ve had plenty of butterflies here or maybe it seems that way, since I am looking more. Even saw the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail again recently. One thing I’ve learned is many butterflies are small. I often confuse them for moths. Maybe set out some orange halves, certain butterflies are attracted to the fruit. I tried bananas, but some type of black beetle ate those up in no time.

  4. John Blair says:

    The Birding Bunch is right about your wasp – Organ Pipe Mud Dauber. They get the name from their mud nests that do look like the pipes on a pipe organ ( http://blogs.lifeandscience.org/greg-dodge/files/2013/08/pipedauber60733_s.jpg ). For their larva, they sting spiders which induces a paralysis and then seal them in the mud “pipes” with one of their eggs. The unlucky spider serves as a live food for the wasp’s larva. Makes me glad they aren’t big enough to predate on humans! The adult wasps feed on flower nectar (and just *love* the pink Swamp Milkweed blooms (in your photo). And they do indeed sting as a young Johnny Blair discovered many years ago when he was fooling around with one of their nests!

  5. neihtn2012 says:

    I am no expert, but I looked up wasp with blue wings and found this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scolia_dubia

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