Thursday, March 21, 2013

Butterfly Watching in Fort Myers Florida

Gulf Fritillary
This is just a quick look at the five life-butterflies that I saw on my recent trip to Fort Myers. The five new species seen were:

Orange barred Sulphur,
Zebra Longwing (official butterfly of Florida),
Julia Longwing,
White Peacock,
and Gulf Fritillary.

I actually dipped on my one target species, which was a Mangrove Skipper [link] that is 'common' at Lovers Key State Park, which is basically hundreds of acres of Red Mangrove, the target butterfly's host plant. I visited the park but saw three other species but not my target species. After I left the park, I noticed in the park guide that there was a butterfly garden pathway that may have hosted my target butterfly... I need to read the manual (rtfm) once in a while. 

 Zebra Heliconian or Zebra Longwing
Julia Heliconian    ...or Longwing

White Peacock

Gulf Fritillary

Orange barred Sulphur - (Wing Span: 2 3/4 - 4 inches) It was huge!

I saw a few other butterflies on the trip which included: Common Buckeye, Red Admiral, Dainty Sulphur and a small dark Monarch (I should have taken a better look at it,  perhaps a Queen Butterfly).

Pretty soon, we'll see some early butterflies, such as Mourning Cloak, Eastern Comma, and Spring Azure will be flying through the forests and natural areas of Southwestern Ontario.

Good butterfly watching!

PS (Some non-lifer but blog labels firsts):
Little Blue Heron - Six Mile Slough

Boat tailed Grackel - Everywhere

Tri-colored Heron - with a mal-formed claw @ ding darling wildlife refuge

Eurasian collared Dove 

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