A Few for Monday

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Just a few more butterflies today. One of the many Long-tailed Skippers on the lantana bush.


A Gulf Fritillary–another butterfly that seems to always be around lately.


And here’s a Great Purple Hairstreak–I saw one for the first time a couple of days ago, and this one turned up today. My goal was to get a photo capturing the iridescent blue of the upper side of the wings, which would be the inner side of the wings in this photo. However, this butterfly kept those wings practically glued together and I couldn’t get a look.


Here you can see some of the blue on the butterfly’s body and on the wings. If I see this butterfly again, I’ll give it another try.






Dragonfly on Sunday


When I walked outside today I saw this at the top of the lavender plant.


It was a dragonfly of course, facing away from me. There have been lots of dragonflies around the yard lately, but usually they’re in flight and I seldom see them sitting still. This was a relatively cooperative dragonfly, and it stayed on the lavender as I moved closer and took another photo.


After darting off for a quick trip around the yard, the dragonfly returned and landed in the same spot.


And here’s the dragonfly in its obelisk pose–head down, body lifted high. This position helps the dragonfly regulate its internal body temperature. It may also be a territorial display aimed at other dragonflies.



More Butterflies

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A few more butterflies today. I’m enjoying having the big lantana bush in the backyard this year–there always seem to be butterflies out there. This Tiger Swallowtail hung around for quite awhile.


Another shot of the big bright Tiger Swallowtail.


I didn’t recognize this one and had to look it up. It’s a Painted Lady.


The orange and black wings with the white spots are very pretty, but I especially like the undersides of the wings–they remind me of lace.


Long-tailed Skipper, a very common butterfly around here just now. There are often several of them on the lantana bush. This one seems to have lost the long tails on its wings that give it its name. The ends of the tails often wear down on these butterflies.


Another Long-tailed Skipper, this one with the long tails.


Lantana flowers result in berries on the plant. A mockingbird was picking some the other day.



Butterfly on Friday


A butterfly for today, one I’ve never seen before. It’s a Great Purple Hairstreak butterfly, with a wingspan of about 2 inches.


This butterfly keeps its wings up like this when it pauses on flowers, with only the undersides in sight. The upper sides of the wings are supposed to be a beautiful iridescent blue, but unfortunately I never got even a glimpse of them! There is some blue showing on the butterfly’s body.



It moves its wings up and down against each other as it perches on a flower. You can see that the positions of the tails on the wings vary from photo to photo as the butterfly moves its wings. I tried to take photos from other angles, but this butterfly kept turning so that the same side was always facing the camera.


A closer look at the Great Purple Hairstreak in the lantana flowers.



Bluebird on Thursday

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A little bluebird was on the wire out front again today. The orange color of the breast is just beginning to show through the grayish feathers. This looks like a young bird growing into its mature coloring.


Stretching up to take a good look around.


And a look down below.


A rear view. Blue feathers are growing in on the wings and tail.


One more of the bluebird.



Anoles and More on Wednesday

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It was bright and sunny today, two days after the hurricane went through. Everything’s pretty much back to normal here. There were lots of anoles around today enjoying the sunshine.

These two were on the back screen door. The big male on the right was pursuing the female on the left, following her around on the screen. She wasn’t impressed and after awhile she ran away.


A baby anole sitting on a concrete block.


I often lean sticks or branches against the fence for the anoles to climb and sit on. This young anole was perched at the top of this branch, watching what was going on below.


Anole climbing through the cedar vine on the fence. She seems to be a female, and something seems to be bothering her–it’s hard to tell for sure through the vines, but she may have her dewlap extended.


One more anole for today. This one was posing on a palm tree late this afternoon.


Lantana flowers.


Rosemary branch.


It’s been a long time since I’ve done sun stars!


A fiery sunset this evening.


A Few for Tuesday

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Hurricane Irma is gone and today things are getting back to normal. Stores in our area reopened today, so I picked up groceries to replace some food and milk we lost in the refrigerator when the power was out. Max and I did a little work in the backyard picking up the small branches that had fallen. Max has been considering them toys that dropped from the trees, so he wasn’t much help in cleaning up.

Anoles were everywhere–on the fences, in the basil pots, in the grass. This pretty little female was sitting on a basil pot.


Butterflies were back too, busy in the flowers again. This one is a Long-tailed Skipper.


Another bluebird was on the wire out front, looking for insects here.


One more of the little bluebird.


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