Sunday, September 30, 2012

Butterflies at Hargus Lake

The other day I was at A.W. Marion State Park in Pickaway County. Known as Hargus Lake by the locals because of the man-made lake that is the center of the park, the park offers a 5 mile lake perimeter trail, a half mile trail through a second growth forest, and a few other smaller trails and paths.

I came for the butterflies.

Subject number 1, and the prize of the day. A minuscule Dainty Sulphur. A butterfly that's generally rare in Ohio, this guy was just barely noticeable among the pebbles of the dog beach area. This year has been an invasion year for Dainty's in Ohio. There have been large numbers reported in many counties all across Ohio. This Dainty, like them all, was incredibly tiny, and I almost overlooked it.

These guys, Common Buckeyes, were definitely among the most common. There were dozens flying around. They aren't residents in Ohio, but instead migrate northward during the summer. This year I've seen a lot, and other years Buckeyes have been known to be absent from Ohio.

These two mating butterflies are Eastern Tailed Blues. They are another very tiny butterfly. Very beautiful in a subtle way. They are one of Ohio's most common butterflies, but tend to be overlooked by people who aren't looking for butterflies because of their size and non-in-your-face colors, like a Zebra Swallowtail. These two were flitting about and it was really hard to get a shot. Eastern Tailed Blues are found in Ohio from April to October, so they're on their last leg at the moment. If you look closely, you can see where they get the name "Tailed." They have tiny projections on each of their hindwings.  

There were a few others present at the park on the day I went. These included many Silver Spotted Skippers, Monarchs, Pearl Crescents, and a Red-Spotted Blue. 

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