Spring has Sprung!

If you needed more proof, other than the 60 and 70 (even 80) degree weather we’ve been having, that spring has come early, here’s more evidence to the affirmative. I’ve been hearing spring peepers, upland chorus frogs, pickerel frogs, cricket frogs, and even American toads calling. And, I’ve been seeing a handful of species of butterfly fluttering about, including question mark, spring azure, American snout, sleepy orange, and falcate orangetip. The peepers and chorus frogs don’t surprise me. A couple of nightsRead more

The Pace Quickens

As the days pass, more and more species step in line. Plants and animals that have been waiting out the cold spring to life as the daytime temperatures hit the 70s and the nights level off in the fifties. A couple more days of chilly (not cold, but chilly) weather and it will all be behind us. Elms and Silky Willows are blooming, butterflies are emerging, and frogs and birds seem eager to get on with starting families, or atRead more

Spring Update

Although at times it doesn’t feel like it, it really is spring. And, this is an update as to some of what has been going on outside here at the Museum during the past spring-like week. I saw the first of the year Falcate Orangetip on 16 March. They, like the mild spring temperatures, are a bit behind schedule. Last year the first sighting was March 6, the year before it was March 8 before I spied one. On TuesdayRead more

First Orangetip!

The first of the season Falcate Orangetip (Anthocharis midea) here at the Museum was seen yesterday, March 6, in Catch the Wind. For those of you unfamiliar with this butterfly, it’s a spring flying butterfly and can only be seen for a short period each year. The sighting of this butterfly on Saturday was two days earlier than the first sighting last year. These butterflies use plants in the mustard family for laying eggs. Not surprising since mustards are late winter/springtimeRead more

Falcate Orangetip!

Yesterday, after writing about the early butterflies that have been showing up recently, I happened upon a Falcate Orangetip (Anthocharis midea). And, I was lucky enough to get a photo the little butterfly. Falcates don’t sit still for long as they zip along the woodland understory so it’s always exciting to be able to get a photo of one. Falcates are early season butterflies, as you may have guessed. The males emerge first in early to mid March, the femalesRead more

The First Dragons and Damsels, a few early Leps

Finally, odes! That is, dragonflies and damselflies. The first Fragile Forktail that caught my attention this season was on March 18 when one individual was seen taking its first flight after emerging. This sighting is nine days later than the first sightings of this species last year, which occurred on the 9th of March. By March 21 many of these tiny, teneral damsels could be seen flying across the path on the north side of the Wetlands in search ofRead more

Aquatics, Early Butterflies, and Bees and Wasps

Although the first few days of March were cold and snowy, by the end of the first week it had warmed enough so that many insects, absent for months, were once again busily going about their daily routines. Aquatic insects observed in the Wetlands during the first half of March were Whirligig Beetle, various diving beetles, Water Boatman, Backswimmer, and Water Strider. Cabbage White, Falcate Orangetip (3/11), Sleepy Orange, Orange Sulphur, Spring Azure (3/11), Questionmark, Mourning Cloak (3/11), and AmericanRead more