Friday, September 07, 2012

The king (or queen!) of butterflies

UPDATE! It's not a Monarch, it's a Viceroy! Thanks to Sheri at Willow House Chronicles for pointing out my boo-boo. I'm excited because I have not knowingly seen on of these before. Now I've looked at pics, I can tell the difference between a Viceroy and a Monarch. 

It's funny because I thought there was something different about it the whole time I was photographing it, but I just figured it was vibrant and newly-hatched. In fact, it's a whole other butterfly! Oh well, I'm still a Monarch fan. :)

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The exquisite and aptly-named Monarch. I followed this one around with my macro lens yesterday. Its wings were so perfect and brightly-coloured that it must have been recently-hatched.



Close up, the wings look like a chalk pastel drawing to me.



I finish these little critters particularly hard to photograph. They seem more easily-spooked than some other butterflies. They see me coming from a mile away and take off. Happily, this one was so busy on the sedum that it let me get really close.



Gorgeous, exquisite and endangered. Want to help a bit? Grow milkweed.



Sharing the bounty with honeybee.



My sedums are absolutely crawling with honeybees right now. It's one of the few yummy things left for them at this time of year and they go crazy for it. Plant sedum in your garden if you want to help out honeybees in fall!



See how many bees you can count. Today there are even more out there!

Here's to our wonderful pollinator friends.

24 comments:

  1. The photos are breathtaking!
    I just planted sedum this year...must get more.
    We saw two monarch caterpillars yesterday..isn't it late for them ?
    Jane x

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    1. Good question and I had to look it up. Apparently it's 10-14 days as a caterpillar, and 10-14 to pupate and become a butterfly. I guess they may still have time to get going before the first frost!

      http://www.monarchwatch.org/biology/cycle1.htm

      Yesterday I saw about ten hickory tussock caterpillars in one tree. It has certainly been the year of the caterpillar around here!

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  2. Perfection. The Monarch and your photographs.

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    1. I always get excited when I see a Monarch. They are so special.

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  3. I counted 7 bees!
    The butterfly is beautiful!

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  4. Amazing photos on the Butterflies wings !
    Me are too tired to count all the Bees , so I just say = MANY :)
    Have a great weekend !

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  5. WOW, indeed! I need (a) some milkweed and (b) a new camera.

    These are wonderful photos!

    My over-the-fence neighbor has a hive and the bees love our swamp sunflowers best of everything blooming here now.

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    1. I had to Google swamp sunflowers. SO pretty! We have milkweed growing all over the farm and I spread the seeds everywhere in fall.

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  6. Stunning photos! I salute your wonderful micro-lens.

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    1. Thank you! I am really happy with it.

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  7. Awesome shots of the Monarch! Interesting to see a bee and monarch on the same flower. I had never thought of that.

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    1. I notice that a lot in my garden. One coneflower plant will have bees, bumblebees, leafcutter bees and butteflies all at the same time!

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  8. My first thought was the same re the first photo; impeccable wings usually means brand new butterfly. Isn't it wonderful that such things are there to brighten up our day!

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    1. I couldn't agree more. How can you not smile when you see a butterfly?

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  9. Hey Natalie, your photographs are just wonderful.
    I was wondering what some flowers at the Union Square Market were yesterday and after seeing these pics, I realise it was Sedum. Will have to plant some when I get back home late September...

    Claire :}

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    1. It's that sedum time of year! :)

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  10. Gorgeous! Your photography is amazing. But... could you possibly have promoted a Viceroy to a Monarch?

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  11. OMG! I think I did!!!

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  12. Love that close up of the wings!

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Thank you for all your comments, which I love to read!