Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Clouded Sulphur on Ironweed...on Labor Day!

Rick and I headed up to Fort Ancient today for a bit of birding, but when we arrived we found locked gates...d'oh! We forgot Fort Ancient is close on National Holidays. We forgot last year too, pulling up to the same locked gates. Apparently we like to bird on Labor Day, especially at Fort Ancient. Hopefully next year we'll remember. Last year we ended up birding the Little Miami River where it runs 240 feet below Fort Ancient (click here for last year's Labor Day/chickadee post), but this year we opted for VOA Park with hopes of finding Eastern Meadowlarks and molting Bobolinks. Birds were a bit scarce in the parched fields today, but butterflies were all around, floating and drifting from flower to flower, nectaring and sunning in the heat of the day.

Yellow on purple...yum!
A Clouded Sulphur nectars on Ironweed.

...the sulphur takes flight.

I love the action in the wings as the sulphur prepares for flight.
I'm guessing this fellow is a Clouded Sulphur. He has a touch of orange on his wings, but he seems mostly yellow. Orange Sulphurs are also common here, and I read they often hybridize with Clouded Sulphurs.

...much of the meadow was parched and brown due to the intense heat and lack of rain we've had this summer, which made the bright yellow of the sulphur against the deep purple of the ironweed even more striking.

Matty points out an Eastern Meadowlark as Rick watches. They didn't know I was watching them instead of the bird!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Labor Day!

25 comments:

Susan W. said...

The colors are breathtaking! Nice work!

Nature ID said...

Incredible pictures!

Midmarsh John said...

The first shot is an absolute stunner Kelly.

Jayne said...

Beautiful! And I love that capture of your two boys. :c)

Kerri said...

Super shots Kelly! Glad you had a nice time :)

Bill S. said...

Beautiful capture of the butterfly and the colors are brilliant.

Wanda..... said...

Perfectly lovely photos, Kelly!
Can't help but notice that Rick and Matty have the exact hair growth pattern...two of a kind!

Roy said...

Nice shots, Kelly! Clouded Sulphurs never let me get close enough for a good shot. Monarchs, Cabbage Whites, Red Admirals, Painted Ladies, even Mourning Cloaks all let me get good shots of them, but Clouded Sulphurs and Swallowtails all seem to flee my presence. Oh well...

Out on the prairie said...

Beautiful pictures. I am surprised you still have the meadowlarks, think they have left around here.I had some orioles return for 2 days but think they may be off also.Many of the birds have flocked early it seems.

grammie g said...

Hi Kelley..the photos of the sulphur are just gorgeous!!
The photos of the male species is not bad either!! ; }

Montanagirl said...

Superb photos! So sharp, colorful and clear. Love that purple and yellow combo. That last picture is priceless. Sometimes it's the candids that are the best.

holdingmoments said...

Beautiful shots Kelly. Such a vibrant colour too.

Idaho Birder said...

Beautiful photos!

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Kelly, It was great to see you again... I posted something on my blog today JUST for you....

Great pictures of the butterflies --and I love that one of Rick and Matty... Matty is almost as tall as his Dad now, isn't he????

Have a great day.
Hugs,
Betsy

Kathy A. Johnson said...

Gorgeous shots, and I'm glad you made the best of your day after Plan A fell through. Looks like the weather was perfect!

Warren Baker said...

Visually stunning Kelly ! What a great mix of Colours :-)

Roy said...

Brilliant images of the butterfly Kelly.

JRandSue said...

Wow top marks,stunning shots.
Love the first image,outstanding.
Fantastic detail.
John.

Mary Ann Gieszelmann said...

Kelly, I'm sorry to hear that Fort Ancient is closed on holidays. When Jim and I were kids, our family often went there on just such holidays. I have great memories of running along the paths through the woods--which seemed awfully big, and kind of spooky, to us little kids. We always packed a picnic lunch and played baseball in the open fields. This was always a special occasion, a time when I absorbed a special appreciation for the outdoors beyond our neighborhood.

Adrienne in Ohio said...

This has been such a wonderful summer for butterflies! Thanks for sharing your amazing macros.

The Early Birder said...

Fantastic colours and stunning close ups Kelly. Good to see Rick in the frame but watch out he doesn't get his own back..lol. FAB.

Marie said...

Gorgeous shots!

Luuuuuua said...

f frumoase fotografii,bravo

Chad said...

Gorgeous, I am beginning to enjoy butterflies as much as I do birds. They make such great picture candidates!

Elaine said...

Spectacular shots, Kelly!