This morning - I figured I would try to find the elusive Olympia Marble at the Pinery (and the Ipperwash Beach area). I had went to the Pinery a few times over the years during May only to dip on finding this fantastic species. I had also wanted to get the three Elfin Species that occur at the Pinery at this time of year as well (Hoary Elfin, Brown Elfin, and Pine Elfin).
The Olympia Marble at a distance just looks like another common Cabbage White, but if you wait for it to land and nectar on a flower, you are treated to a beautiful marbling of metalic gold colour on its lower hind-wing. It also had a pinkish tinge on its forewing.
The Elfins are basically small brown hairstreak-like butterflies. If you can find a fresh one, and good lighting, they have some wonderful iridescent blue scales in their wings. Pine Elphins use Pine Trees as their foodplant. The two other Elfins use Bearberry plants - which are quite common around Ipperwash, Port Franks and the Pinery.
I also went to the Port Franks Conservation area for a walk around that trail. One highlight from that walk was to recognize and hear Hooded Warblers and Black billed Cuckoos.
I was hoping to see or hear Prairie Warblers at the Pinery but that was not the case this time around. I got to see some nice Eastern Bluebirds, Eastern Phoebes, Pine Warblers among others.
Good birding and butterfly watching!
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