Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Spring Arrrives in Durham Today, Leaves Tomorrow

Today Meg called me from our deck to tell me spring had arrived. Yes it has arrived in Durham, NC. She had seen a male Falcate Orangetip flying by the deck, the orange wing tips of the male we very visible to the naked eye. Our first harbinger of Spring from our porch. She also saw a Mourning Cloak and a anglewing. Anglewing is what we call either a Question Mark or an Eastern Comma these are difficult to tell apart, please check out the links on them to learn more about them.Above the male flies past the female and with her abdomen raised up she is signalling she is not interested in breeding at this time. I've seen this with many kinds of butterflies and wondered what was the deal with her raising up like that.

Many of you might wonder if this little butterfly would visit your garden? Well if you live in the city or in the middle of a subdivision probably not. But if you live near moist woodlands, woodland openings or riparian habitats you just might see this one. There are several species of orangetips in the US even out west they have them.
Here the male easy to tell by the orange tipped wings is on a very common weed Dandelion one of the few flowers in early spring it can find to nectar on.
Above the female is nectaring on Spring Beauties.

12 comments:

blossom said...

I would like those to flies freely in my garden. Beautiful small creatures.

Lanny said...

Knowing that the butterflies and birds rely on the nectar and seeds of the common dandelion and other "weeds" really can change a persons outlook on them.

Hope your spring doesn't run and hide for too long.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Butterflies already! Lucky you!

I've got my butterfly attracting plants started and I'm babying those seeds. Hopefully I'll have butterflies everywhere this spring and summer.

tina said...

I will be on the lookout for them.
Such great pictures to identify them.

gardenerprogress/Catherine said...

Oh, those are pretty! I don't think we'll see butterflies for awhile. I've only seen a few varieties in our garden and I've tried to put a lot of butterfly attracting flowers out.
Great pictures!

flowergardengirl said...

I hope they come to visit my garden in the piedmont. They are so pretty.

Mildred said...

Great photos as usual.

Cameron (Defining Your Home) said...

Already? wow! I did see a few bees yesterday. Hope this cold snap goes away quickly.

Cameron

Kanak Hagjer said...

Love these beauties! The markings are really pretty. I did notice a cabbage white with its abdomen raised up and I thought that was odd! Now I understand. Really looking forward to many more of your butterfly photos...

Just Jenn said...

Ah spring! I love all the butterflies! Someday I hope to convert a small part of our backyard into a haven for these beauties.

sweet bay said...

Beautiful pictures. I've seen what I think were female Falcate Orangetips on our farm, but none stayed still long enough to pose for a picture.

Ginger said...

These photos are breathtaking! I don't think we have this kind of butterfly in Mississippi.

Great blog! Thanks for visiting mine.