First butterfly of Spring

tucker_sp(Z4 MN)April 21, 2014

It's about 65 today, sunny but windy. Yesterday was the first 70-deg. day since early last October. I was sitting in the back yard this afternoon watching a couple of young squirrels exploring for the first time, and a mourning cloak butterfly came floating across the yard and then over the house. Very nice to see it out of hibernation and flying, but there is almost nothing for it to eat at this point - hope it does alright.
Tucker

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docmom_gw Zone 5 MI(5)

Tucker,
Mourning Cloaks nectar on tree sap. So, any recently broken branches from wind or ice storms will provide food sources for them. Should be fine.

Martha

    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 6:51PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

That's great Tucker!

Sherry

    Bookmark   April 21, 2014 at 8:11PM
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Leafhead

Great!! Mourning Cloaks are THE first butterfly of Spring.
They often come out of hibernation before the Robins arrive.
They love to feed on tree sap and bask in the warm sun.
You may be able to coax one into your garden using a ripe banana and/or mango in a clay saucer in a sunny, sheltered area in your garden.
This method will work beautifully later in the Spring for attracting Commas and Question Marks, along with Red Admirals and Red Spotted Purples.

John

    Bookmark   April 24, 2014 at 12:33PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Mourning cloaks are pretty rare here, I've only seen them a few times, once in late fall, the other two times in late winter. Late last winter (2012/2013) there was one that I first saw clinging to a bush in a blustery north wind. It stayed until the weather got better, and I so hoped to have mourning cloak eggs/caterpillars, but didn't get any.
When it landed on the gravel driveway, I got this, my one and only MC picture -

Sherry

    Bookmark   April 24, 2014 at 3:05PM
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Leafhead

Beautiful photo of an exquisite butterfly :-)

John

    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 9:01AM
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