Hummingbird Bird and Moth

Top Photo: Juvenile male ruby-throated hummingbird, rapidly beating wings blurred to near invisibility, hovers in front of trumpet vine’s tubular flowers. There are 16 species of hummingbird that breed in the United States. There’s only one species in the eastern states, ruby-throated hummingbird. If you see a hummingbird in North Carolina in summer, it’s a ruby-throated. From October into winter it’s most likely a different species that you see at your feeder, unless you’re on the Gulf Coast or ourRead more

What You Could See…

Pictures often say so much more than words can. That’s why I’ve put together the following two dozen images of both plant and plant users (Lepidoptera and one Araneae) that you can find right here at the Museum. You may have to look a little closer than you may be accustomed to, but they’re here. Let’s start with the Araneae. The wolf spider below has captured something, and though it’s difficult to tell exactly what that something is, it looksRead more

Caterpillar Time

It’s that time of year again when caterpillars seem to be everywhere. Oh sure, caterpillars can be seen from spring till late fall, sometimes in huge numbers. How can you forget those cankerworms that dangled on silky threads from every tree branch by the thousands, no millions, last April. No, what I’m talking about is the huge variety of species that can be viewed at this time of year. Both moth and butterfly species have been busy all summer producing youngRead more

Snowberry

I spotted a resting clearwing moth while I searched for caterpillars in the garden outside the Butterfly House here at the Museum. It was morning, and the day-flying moth probably spent the night where it perched, it was rapidly flapping its wings in shallow beats to warm itself for the first flight of the day.     Snowberry clearwings visit flowers for nectar, often hovering above rather than perching on the flowers as they sip the sugary liquid. Both caterpillar andRead more

Tiger Swallowtails and Others

It has been widely reported over the last week or so that Eastern Tiger Swallowtails are being seen in large numbers throughout our area (the Carolinas). Listservs such as Carolina Leps have had posts which speak of “an explosion of Tiger Swallowtails” and subject lines like “Tigers!” and “Day of the Tiger.”  It’s no different here at the Museum. Tiger swallowtails are back! Tiger swallowtail numbers peak in April/May and again in late July/August here in the Piedmont, although they canRead more