Butterfly Counting Day

Butterfly Counting Day by Tina Marchese

The morning of Saturday, May 27, was dedicated to the life cycle of Florida butterflies: how to attract them, flowers and plants that support them, and how to watch and identify them. Ken Gonyo’s lively talk and concise PowerPoint presentation culminated in having the fifty attendees emerge from Audubon House into the warm sunshine and form two counting teams. With one team led by Ken and Diane Morgan and the other headed by Nancy Soucy and David Heuberger, they went forth in quiet pursuit of butterflies along two nearby Olso Riverfront Conservation Area (ORCA) trails. Returning about forty minutes later, they reported at total of 97 sightings.

Here is the total count:

White Peacock 27
Zebra Longwing 8
Gulf Fritillary 6
Cassius Blue 28
Ceraunus Blue 15
Great Souther White 1
Black Swallowtail 3
Horace’s Duskywing 2
Fiery Skipper 1
Monarch 1
Giant Swallowtail 2
Cloudless Sulphur 3
Total 97

The second part of the program was devoted to caterpillars and their specific host plants — often different from the plants, which attract and feed their progeny. For the super-motivated butterfly fanciers, Ken recommended three books (which are now in the Pelican Island Audubon Society [PIAS] library) and sold some of the appropriate Florida native plants available in our PIAS nursery. He reminded us that butterflies, along with bees, birds, wind, insects, (EVEN mosquitoes) are critical pollinators of plants, flowers and agricultural crops and we all need to do our parts in supporting their survival. It was a morning full of fun and great information.

Thanks, Ken, Nancy, and David!

Photos from Butterfly Day

From the Hometown News.

1 reply »

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.