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How often do you see?

Posted by tom123 z9 Fl. ( on
Wed, Aug 21, 13 at 16:02

Yesterday I saw a dark form Tiger and then later I saw a yellow Tiger. Today I saw a Queen. These are unusual for me, especially the Queen and the Dark Form Tiger. This led me to think about what butterflies I see and how often. Below is a brief summary. I would be interested in what others see and how often. It would help if you mention where you live. I live in Central Florida, just west of Orlando.

All the time: (meaning if I am out in the garden for ten minutes or so)
Monarchs, Gold Rims, Sulphurs, Skippers, Zebra Longwings, Gulf Fritillaries

Every day:
Eastern Black Swallowtails: Giant Swallowtails:

Once a week or so:
Pipevines, Spicebush, Palamedes, Tiger Swallowtails

Perhaps once a month:
White Peacocks: Red Admirals

Rarely although they are reported in my area:
Red Spotted Purples: Queens: Viceroys: Tiger Swallowtails (Black Form): Zebra Swallowtails: American Painted Ladies: Buckeye: Pearl Crescent: Question Mark:

This post was edited by tom123 on Wed, Aug 21, 13 at 16:06

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: How often do you see?

I'm in southeast Mississippi, halfway betweeen Hattiesburg and Gulfport.

All the time:
Sulphurs (cloudless, sleepy oranges and little yellows)
Skippers (many types, but long-tailed and silver-spotted most obvious
Tiger swallowtails
Spicebush swallowtails
Red-spotted purples (though not always in the garden)

Every day:
Gulf frits
Red admirals

Once a week or so:
Palamedes swallowtails (used to be common before problems with redbays)
Spring/Summer Azures

Once a Month:
Pearl crescents
Red-banded hairstreaks

I'll put American ladies in this category, but they're common in spring, and I always get to raise the cats at that time.
Variegated fritillaries (used to be more common)
Mourning cloaks (only two visits, lifetime)
Pipevine swallowtails (used to be common, if I can get eggs, they'll be common again)
Giant swallowtails (have been rare this year, but if I get eggs.....)
Monarchs (haven't seen one all year, even rarer than usual)
Black swallowtails (" " " " )
Question marks (" " " " )
Zebra swallowtails (one or two visits, lifetime)
Zebra longwings (one visit, lifetime)
Cabbage whites (two visits, lifetime)
Striped hairstreaks
Great purple hairstreaks

This has been a bad year, to put it mildly!


RE: How often do you see?

OMG, I wish I just had your variety. My numbers are falling fast and trips looking end up being solo adventures.

RE: How often do you see?

I forgot about two butterflies -

Goatweed leafwings - I don't see these, but that doesn't mean they aren't here. I once planted goatweed/Croton capitatum, I think that's the type that grows here and got caterpillars. I never got to see the butterflies properly, though, because, even in the cage after they emerged, they kept their wings up all the time. Periodically, they'd open them for a nano-second (they make a clicking sound when they open their wings) but not long enough for me to get a picture of their beautiful orange topsides. I once heard the clicking sound outside and finally saw one in a nearby tree, but it took a while, because their undersides really do blend in with a dead leaf! They may be here, but who'd know? I'd need to plant Crotons again to find out.

Southern pearly-eyes - these show up here a few times a year, I even got some half-way decent pictures this year. I think they're probably much more common down the road where the canes grow, so I planted some canes in the (wet) bottom of the hollow this year, and they're thriving. I hope to get cats in the future.


RE: How often do you see? P.S.

When I went out to the garden, I saw this gray hairstreak, which reminded me I hadn't included this species. I only see them rarely, and, since this one was a bit faded and tattered, it probably traveled a bit to get here -

 photo TatteredGrayHairstreak_zpsc805a96a.jpg


RE: How often do you see?

This year I am seeing:
All the time: Tiger Swallowtails-tons of yellow and more dark form than I have ever seen before, silver spotted skipper
A few times a week-Black Swallowtail
Occasionally-Red Spotted Purple
This is a pitiful year. Usually there is a much bigger variety around. If I go to one of the parks or established gardens looking for more butterflies, I may find them, but not as many would like to see. Still have not found a Monarch this year.

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