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Big Garden Giveaway!

We’ve got a big giveaway for butterfly gardeners and people who want to become butterfly gardeners. Until July 1st, just send an email to gardens@naba.org with your name and be entered into a drawing to win:

  • free butterfly gardening certification (if your garden meets the certification standards)
  • a six month free trial membership to NABA!
  • A signed copy of Butterfly Gardener editor Jane Hurwitz’s book, plus an hour long phone consultation about your garden!
Image result for butterfly gardening jane hurwitz
  • One of our outdoor signs:

Don’t have a qualifying garden yet? Not to worry; the winner has up to one year to establish it! You can see the program requirements here: http://nababutterfly.com/butterfly-garden-certification-program/

Northern Cloudywing on indian paintbrush. Image at top is a Large Orange Sulphur on Mexican Sunflower
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Dr. Glassberg’s Excellent Adventure Day 3 Oklahoma

(We rejoin Dr. Glassberg’s journey through Oklahoma. Pictured above, a Monarch on Green Milkweed – ed)

Although the goal of the trip had been achieved, an identifiable photo of an Outis Skipper, today I set out to see if we could find any more individuals and to see if I could obtain better photos.

The Outis Skipper!

Sun – check; warm weather – check;  Outis Skipper – check!  We started on the same gravel road and, fairly quickly, found an Outis Skipper mudpuddling where the road was blocked by high water.  I was able to get reasonable photos of this one.  So – photos of three different Outis Skippers – I’m a happy camper.

We spent most of the rest of the day checking out Green Milkweeds and other flowers. Amazingly, the number of cloudywing dropped off markedly from yesterday.  In fact, although it was warm and sunny, we saw many fewer individuals, and fewer species, than we saw yesterday.  We did a few new species – Silver-spotted Skipper and Dusted Skipper.

With mission accomplished, I was able to take a leisurely drive back to my hotel, stopping to take in the local sights.  For example, they don’t have a school of horseshoing in New Jersey!  Also, although I knew that the Oklahoma City Thunder basketball team had disappointedly lost to the Portland Trailblazers in the NBA playoffs, I was stunned to learn that the loss had made the entire city impotent, at least according to the billboard that I saw.

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Dr. Glassberg’s Excellent Adventure Day 2 Oklahoma

(Will NABA’s President Dr. Jeffrey Glassberg snap the Outis Skipper? Read on to find out! Pictured above is a Confused Cloudywing on an indian paintbrush – ed)

Woke up this morning and the blue skies in my eyes encouraged smiles. By 9 am, when I got to the first spot in Lexington WMA the temperature was 60 degrees.  And, in the sunshine, it felt good.  Walking along the road, I saw many butterflies, including lots of cloudywings and anglewings.  I looked closely at many of the cloudywings, because Outis Skipper is awfully similar – but no Outis. 

Pipevine Swallowtail caterpillar on wooly pipevine

At 10 am I drove to Bryan’s house and we went back out together, back to the same spot.  More and more butterflies began flying.  We saw Black and Pipevine Swallowtails, a Southern Dogface, a Silvery Checkerspot, loads of ladies and Red Admirals, Viceroys and Red-spotted Purples, Goatweed Leafwings and Northern Pearly-eyes, but no Outis Skippers.

Encouraged, we continued walking back and forth along the road.  A little after 11 am, we both jumped as we saw a small dark spreadwing skipper dart from the underbrush.  Landing near us – it was an Outis Skipper!! Finally.  I grabbed some photos and then it flew again, but only a short distance away.  It sat with its wings partially open, but stray bits of grass and twigs obscured the view.  Then, it flew off, not to be seen again.  I was elated! 

Yeah! The Outis Skipper!

In the afternoon, we drove around Lexington WMA and ending up seeing 43 species of butterflies – not bad.  You can see the list at the NABA Recent Sightings page.  The highlight of the afternoon was another Outis Skipper, this one nectaring at Green Milkweed.    

Confused Cloudywing on indian paintbrush