Monday, July 13, 2009

A Zebra Swallowtail at Strouds Run State Park in Athens, Ohio

Birding in Athens, Ohio and Hocking Hills
Today I made it to Strouds Run State Park. It's not far at all from my hotel and seemed a great place to start. It was very pretty. Most notable were the butterflies, blackberries and Catbirds!


A Zebra Swallowtail butterfly...I know this because I bought
"Butterflies of Ohio" by Jaret C. Daniels at the Wayne National
Forest Visitor's Center. It's about time I start learning the
names of these incredibly beautiful and beneficial creatures!


A Silver Spotted Skipper. You can't see his orange
splotch. It's hidden behind that spiky blade of grass.


I think this is a Great Spangled Fritillary. Look at his
tattered wings. He has seen better days. I wonder what
happened to him? Maybe a bird tried to nip at him...
or he overwintered and his wings are just worn.
In Cincy, I see Catbirds every year, but not that many of them, but at Strouds Run State Park, I saw twelve...and every one was near, on, or eating blackberries! In three different spots in the park, I saw batches of blackberries and found Catbirds. Unfortunately, they said "No photographs today, please. We are eating blackberries and have no time for posing."


Wherever I saw a stand of blackberries,
I saw several Catbirds standing around...


Yum...I would too!
What in the world is this???
Check out this photo. I took it on the Hocking River Bike Trail. In the bottom-right corner, you can see a very blurry Acadian Flycatcher looking down (another non-posing bird), but what creeps me out is on the left side on the trunk of the tree. It looks like a big gelatinous pink wormy thing. I didn't see this when I took the photo...I only noticed it when I was cropped down the photo of the Acadian Flycatcher. I have five photos and they all have this on them, in the same spot. Is it some sort of fungus...or some sort of alien wormy thing? I hope someone out there knows! It's sort of weird...

Do you see the blurry flycatcher at the bottom right?
Now...look to the left. Do you see that pink, segmented,
wormy thing? It's pretty big and extends all the way up
the side of the tree for 3 or 4 feet (maybe more...that's
all my photo shows). It's that glistening bumpy stuff.


Here's a shot of just that end piece. See the segments?
I guess it's some sort of fungus, but it looks like it could
uncurl and reach out and grab that flycatcher! :-)

30 comments:

Sue said...

What a pretty butterful that Zebra Swallowtail is! And the blackberries looked wonderful-I wish I could get a bucketful.

NatureStop said...

Great selection of images of the butterflies..Love the Zebra Swallowtail.

DK Miller said...

I enjoyed the nice butterfly photos. I did see the pink wormy thing you mention - creepy. No idea what it is. Let us know if you figure it out.

ShySongbird said...

Your butterflies (like your birds) are so exotic looking Kelly, beautiful photos! Some of the Blackberries in our hedgerows are ripe already, how can the year be passing so quickly!

Rob Ripma said...

Beautiful photos, I really enjoyed the Zebra Swallowtail! I need to make it over to Hocking Hills sometime, its really not all that far from me.

Montanagirl said...

The butterflies are beautiful! Don't know what the pink creepy thing is. Hope it didn't get the Flycatcher!

Roy said...

Great shots of the butterflies! And I have no clue what your mystery thing is. Maybe it's... The Blob! Where's Steve McQueen when you need him?

Teri C said...

FABULOUS photos!!! I have never seen a zebra butterfly before-how gorgeous his markings are.

JRandSue said...

Hi Kelly,absolutely loved your Zebra Swallowtail,fantastic shot.
John.

holdingmoments said...

Beautiful butterfly shots Kelly.
No idea what the 'worm' thing is.
Creepy lookiing though lol

NW Nature Nut said...

Love the butterflies! I wish I had more in my neck of the woods.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Yuk Kel.... I have no idea what that wormy thing is.... But your butterflies are gorgeous.

I'd love to eat those blackberries. Tell the catbirds to save me some!!!

Hugs,
Betsy

Steve B said...

You mean that you didn't reach out and touch it to see if it would move? Could it be the root of an arborial plant? I love the butterfly shots.

Jenny said...

Beautiful butterflies Kelly! On the other hand, my first thought when I saw your pink blobby thing was (I'm afraid) that it looked like intestines! YUK! I hope someone has an answer for you.

Laubaine said...

kelly , j'écris en français j'espere
que tu pourras traduire , tu as fais de très belles images de papillon
tu as un beau mélange d' espece et de couleurs ...
BRAVO

Warren Baker said...

Your blackberries are a month ahead of ours kelly! Great butterfly!

Laure Ferlita said...

Could it be some sort of vine with segments growing back there that you caught out of focus? That's my best guess!

Love the butterflies - just gorgeous!

The Early Birder said...

That Swallowtail has amazing, exotic colours. No idea on the ID query....alien lifeform maybe? Don't loose any sleep over it. FAB

Elaine said...

Your butterfly shots are wonderful! And the blackberries--oh, my! They don't grow here but I love wild blackberries. I spent many hours picking them when I was a kid. Mmmm!

Midmarsh John said...

What a beauty that Zebra Swallowtail is.

Soon be time for a blackberry pie or in a bowl with some ice cream. Yummi

Steve Ballmer said...

Interesting blog my friend!

Abe Lincoln said...

The zebra swallowtail has been here two years in a row. I have many pictures of it and they are large. Or this one was. Almost as big as my hand and it sorta drifted from flower to flower.

Your photo shows it looking in its prime. Nice shots.

Jayne said...

I like Steve's suggestion of a root system of some sort. Have not seen too many butterflies around here this season for some reason. Love seeing the juicy berries... yum!

Adrienne in Ohio said...

Awesome picture of that zebra swallowtail! We haven't seen too many butterflies this year other than cabbage whites and a few great spangled frittilaries. Do you think our summer hasn't been hot enough?

Mary said...

Beautiful Zebra Swallowtail! Looks like you found some great places to go in Athens. That wormy thing is strange. Wish we knew what it was.

dAwN said...

keep looking at that growth or thing..and cant figure out what it is!
looks like u are seeing some really great stuff in Ohio...poor tattered flutterby!

Deb said...

Your photos are fabulous Kelly! The Zebra Swallowtail is gorgeous.

Kelly said...

Hello everyone! Thank you for the wonderful and oh so very nice comments. I still haven't figured out what that stuff is. I hope I can make it back and try to find that tree. On Tuesday, Heather and I went birding at Old Man's Cave and Cedar Falls...it was great! We had sooo much fun. I will post on what we saw in a few days. I want to try to do a little painting of a Black-throated Green Warbler, since I wasn't able to photoraph it...and it played a major role in our birding that day! I saw some more butterflies today. It's going to take me a while to get everything posted.

Roy said...

Fabulous butterfly shots Kelly, especially the swallowtail.

Kelly said...

Thanks, Roy!