Monday, September 20, 2010

Butterflying with Bob

Some speakers/ writers weave magic with their words- and we were treated to one of the best this weekend. The butterfly world's most famous citizen dropped down in Black Swamp territory, and not unlike Santa Claus, he left behind a passel of warm feelings and goodwill.

Robert Michael Pyle, watched butterflies before we even had a term for it- Butterflying.

And for the past 40 odd years he has been helping others learn and enjoy these fascinating creatures. His greatest gift might well be his ability to connect with people. From the smallest child to the veteran "skipper and moth" groupies - Bob relates. We thought he would make a great politician, but he is just too dog-gone sincere.
It was a little cool and cloudy for our field trip, but once we found a Great Spangled Fritillary, Bob put it through the paces... and education and delight meld into one.

Bob talked skippers and conservation with Jan, one of the Kitty Todd Karner Blue monitors. Note he is using a Kaufman guide in this photo, although he wrote the first butterfly guide for Audubon! Each guide has it own merits- and I use both. Kaufman's side-by-side photos rock, while Pyle's has informative narrative on host plants!

Oh egg-heads gather round. Here are the serious B-fliers lapping up knowledge at a Bob Pyle puddle-party.

Bianca Davis, Greg Miller, Linda Romaine, and Darrick, soaking up some plant and butterfly facts from Ohio's own Jim Davidson.

So, my weekend was filled with friends, butterflies and plants as well. I will be spitting out a few of the adventures over the coming days. Until then, "thanks" to the Kaufmans and Black Swamp Bird Observatory for making this weekend possible!


  1. hey good for you - sounds like a great program and experience. he is in the Cleveland area for a book signing tonight, but i think i will get the new book from the library - lol - must have been fun