The most common, the Spring Azure, a delicate blue beauty (magnified here to 4 times its actual size!) found near woodlots and dappled shade is a fast flier who rarely provides an extended look.
Equally appealing are Red-banded Hairstreaks, just one of our many, similar-looking, gossamer winged hairstreaks. They can be a challenge to sort, but how gratifying would it be to find a rare White-M Hairstreak! It would be the same thrill a birder feels when finding a Mississippi Kite or a Kirtland's Warbler, all three are rarities in Ohio.
If you don't have this book, you'll want to go here and order one.
Butterflies are interesting creatures of diverse habits and habitats. Most are highly selective, with specific host plants needed to maintain their larva. There is such an intimate tie between butterflies and their host plants, it is not surprising that Dr. Jaret Daniels is a botany guy too.
What is surprising, is the fact he would trek all the way from Florida for the third year in a row- just to see the Southern Ohio butterflies and lead a Flora-Quest trip!
So if your wildest dreams include Olive (Juniper) Hairstreaks, or...
the subtle shades of Henry's Elfins, you'll want to beat feet to the Flora-Quest website and download a registration form. You'll have to write in "BUTTERFLY TRIP" as this news is so new- we don't even have it listed yet!
Everyone attending Flora-Quest will get a species list of the butterflies found in Shawnee during the spring, and I hope you'll enjoy these little beasties as much as I do.
Maybe some year we will have to offer a "Caterpillar Quest" too!