Saturday, July 14, 2007

Got Milk(weed)?

Monarch caterpillar on milkweed

At last--the discovery of a monarch caterpillar! And although the field stands full of milkweed plants, this single caterpillar is all we can find. The milkweed flowers have turned to good-sized seed pods, in fact--soon to blow away in the wind.
There are no butterflies here. And no wonder--no food.

But, across the field the teasel has burst into blossom--delicate purple flowers on spiny towering stalks.
What a welcome sight--if you're a thirsty butterfly and arrived too late for a milkweed dinner!




Eastern Tiger Swallowtail



Silver Spotted Skipper


Clearwing Moth


Monarch

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8 comments:

KatDoc said...

Beautiful "flutter-bys," Nina, and I love your big, fat Monarch caterpillar. I hope he sticks around your yard.

I enjoyed meeting you and birding with you today.

~Kathi

mon@rch said...

So many wonderful butterflies here but without a doubt the monarch is the fave of mine! (would you expect anything different? )

RuthieJ said...

Hi Nina,
Cool butterfly pictures. I've never seen teasel before...is it a zone 5 plant?

nina said...

Ruthie--Teasel is probably around you somewhere, except for Gulf Coast states--although don't try to plant it in your yard. It's an invasive, but seems to have a value in this situation, and until something better grows in its place.
Look here: http://www.invasivespeciesinfo.gov/plants/teasel.shtml

Kathi--Yeah, me too! I'll put it on my calendar for another time--seeing that Wood Thrush nest was just the perfct day for me!

Monarch--I'm guarding this ONE special caterpillar just for that reason!

Mary said...

Fantastic photos, Nina! I've been seeing a few more butterflies lately since we had a little rain... But no monarchs yet!

Body Soul Spirit said...

Nice pictures. We have teasels everywhere here. I like the way they look in all seasons, even if they are invasive.
ruth

Q said...

Dear Nina,
Always love seeing your bugs and birds and blooms.
I think you have a Pipevine Swallowtail pictured as well as the Tiger! I do love them too. Nice to have a Monarch caterpillar...
Sherry

Cathy said...

You got the Clearwing. Wonderful. I've tried with no success. Back to the camera manual . . .