Saturday, August 16, 2014

Pelee Visit: Some Butterflies and other Things

I had the urge to visit Point Pelee today.  Turned out to be a nice day weather-wise, but perhaps a little too windy.

One thing I noticed was that webworms are pretty thick this summer.

I first spent over 1.5 hours at the Tip.  It was quite active, but nothing unusual.  The only duck was a Red-breasted Merganser!
Gulls were congregated at the Tip as usual.  I like to get there before the tourists flush them!

A couple of young bonies were in the group.

Swallows were plentiful today.  Many appeared to be Barn and Bank.

I walked up the east side to Sparrow Field.  It was evident that lots of dragonflies were around today.  This Swamp Darner alighted briefly for a photo.

In fact, there were thousands of Green Darners, hundreds of Black Saddlebags, and dozens of Twelve-spotted Skimmers.  A few other species mixed in included a single Carolina Saddlebags.

Green Darner

Twelve-spotted Skimmer

Turned out that birds were scarce in the park today.  A nice group of common birds in Sparrow Field included gnatcatchers, Yellow-Warblers, Common Yellow-throats, Indigo Buntings, Least Flycatchers, etc.

Even though it was very windy, I walked up the west beach trail. There were hundreds of dragonflies, but very few butterflies.

Painted Lady

Dun Skipper
A brief check of De Laurier area revealed nothing.  Henrietta O-Neill was not finding much either.
At North-west Beach a worn Common Buckeye was working the weeds.

After some a perch lunch, I headed towards Hillman Marsh.  I almost did not go in, but I did anyway.  Turned out to be a good choice.  I had not been in there recently and found that the trail on the far side of the shorebird cell had not been cut this summer.  It was good for butterflies and I found lots, even though it was common stuff today.
Highlights were a couple of Fiery Skippers.

Quite a few Peck's Skippers were here as well. (Try and find one within PPNP!--I did have one a few years ago).


Lots of Eastern-tailed Blues, Pearl Crescents (only two in PPNP this morning!), Black Swallowtails, etc.

A couple of Bronze Coppers were present as well.

I spent quite a bit of time along that section as there were more butterflies there than in the park!

As I was leaving, Pete Chapman and Ann White were just pulling in.  They were doing a pseudo Pelee butterfly count!  For some reason, the Point Pelee butterfly count is non-existent anymore. (LOL)

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