Country road driving,
Fluttering wings catch my eye;
Just over a week ago I was driving along the back roads from finishing some work, and the sun was shining, and I had my windows rolled down a bit to let the wind blow in gently.
Listening to the radio and glancing at the rear-view mirror periodically, at one point my gaze was immediately drawn to some erratic fluttering in the back window. I soon realized what it was and stopped the car – it’s a quiet stretch of road where I was – and went to investigate further. Somehow….not sure if via the open windows or when I had opened and closed the hatchback door earlier, this gentle creature managed to get inside for a ride.
I wondered how attached butterflies and moths get to their surroundings, for I may have relocated this one several kilometres further from where it had been.
In any case, I took some photos of this daring wanderer and then set it free….to flutter away in its characteristic style on the flow of the breeze.
You may remember a couple of my posts in August about the monarch caterpillars that my mother was fostering. I had stayed with my parents for a few days and eagerly took photos and observed right along with my parents on the gradual progress of each caterpillar.
In the meantime I had returned back to my home and so wasn’t present when each caterpillar transformed itself into a pupa, then chrysalis….and finally, coming forth from its temporary home as a newly fledged monarch butterfly.
However, my parents kept sending me updates and a couple of photos. The above photo is one of theirs, and it shows the first of the three emerging from its chrysalis case, while the second one, on the left, is still inside.
My mother sent me this photo with the message, “It’s a girl!” 🙂
I’m pleased to let you know that each of the three in turn and in their own time successfully made their debut – safely until their wings were in fine form – then were moved into the backyard….and flitted away….as is their way, on their long migratory journey south.
And the other two butterflies ended up being a boy and another girl! 🙂
Note: Here and also here are the earlier posts about the caterpillars that I mentioned above.
Starting out so small,
Eating its way through milkweed
To grow and transform.
I’m visiting at my parents’ place, and my mother excitedly showed me her little “friends.” Each one in a separate glass loosely filled with a couple of freshly picked milkweed leaves.
Her two friends are still quite small and not easily seen.
My mother is once again fostering a couple of monarch caterpillars in comfy protectiveness with fresh milkweed leaves, until they grow into their full size and make their chrysalis for their metamorphosis stage.
This one of the two is the larger and is about the length of my index fingernail right now. About 1 cm.
See the cool eating pattern it has made in this milkweed leaf. 🙂
My mother is all excited at these two new ones, as she has successfully nurtured monarch caterpillars in previous years and set them free as butterflies. ❤
A monarch exhibit is Plexiglas cocooned.
Photo taken earlier this year (in February), this temporary exhibit looked so appealing…especially when lit up at night!
It has the distinctive monarch pattern on the outside panel, and filled within the see-through walls inside this “cocoon” tunnel were artistically arranged samples of dried up milkweed and grasses and twigs (to denote trees) to show the main food and habitat for our migrating fluttering friends.
You hear the buzzing,
Fast wing beats; it seeks nectar.
And look — it’s orange!
There are two of us working in the garden….weeding and hoeing and trimming. At one point we stopped to take a breather and admire the flowers that were blooming.
We could see the busy butterflies, delicately perching on purple or blue flowers here and there in the search for delicious nectar.
We could hear the hum of sound created by several bumble bees, moving along purposefully from flower to flower for their share of nectar and, of course, pollen.
Then Ryan, my gardening partner, spied something unusual. At first he thought it was a really tiny hummingbird, as it seemed to fly and hover similar in that style. It was hard to get a really good glimpse of it, so I pulled out my phone to snap some shots to help us with identification. As we observed its movements, it eventually became clear that it WASN’T a hummingbird but another type of insect. And the photos seem to support that idea.
As both Ryan and I have never seen such an insect before, I decided to post some photos of it on my blog and see if any of my readers might be familiar with it and could enlighten me as to its identity.
Sits ever so still;
But on approaching too close,
Whoop! Leaping surprise!
It was one of those days when a lot of wildlife showed up in the garden as I was hoeing and weeding.
First, a more beige-coloured frog surprised me, when it jumped from beneath some leaves, as I must have been getting closer with the hoe.
Then a little later, this little green, spotted fellow crossed my path and soon sat in the cool shade and let me take oodles of photos. Such a cutie!
AND THEN! As I continued hoeing, all of a sudden there was a slithering going on! Startled me a bit until I realized it was a garter snake – I guess I disturbed her rest. And I watched her do her slithery circle thing through the grass and back into the flower bed. As she disappeared underneath some protective leaves, another frog suddenly leaped from that same area and crossed the path to the other side!!
And among some blue-ish flower spikes, there was a constant buzzing and wing flapping going on – both bumble bees and butterflies dining busily on all the nectar.
Lots of action happening!