Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Western Crescents and Fritillaries

These are photos I took out in the Yosemite area (California) back in June. Given I'm an eastern US butterfly guy. Western fritillaries and crescents are very hard to ID even with good photos. Hoping some of my western butterfly friends will chime in on these IDs.

No ID for this fritillary above and below on Purple Milkweed. Any suggestions? This one was found in Maraposa County, CA along a dirt road in a very open mixed forest near a cattle ranch. It was near the county line which was unmarked and I do not have current access to my DeLorma map which Sharna still has in Yosemite..



This fritillary above and below was found inside of Groveland a small town outside of Yosemite Park. I'm stumped on where to begin IDing this one.



Fritillaries out west are very hard, I think this is a Coronis Fritillary, Speyeria coronis. This one was found along the Old Yosemite Rd where the road just ended in the woods. There was a clearing filled with clover and the road intersected 3 different ways and the road sign was laying in the woods. All the roads at this point were overgrown with trees and not passable with our rental car.

This small crescent I believe to be a Mylitta Crescent please correct me if I'm wrong?

This small crescent I believe to be a Mylitta Crescent, Phyciodes mylitta . Found along Evergreen Road in Toulomne County, CA.


Mylitta Crescent, Phyciodes mylitta again??

I think this is a Field Crescent, but western crescents can fool you especially when your from the eastern US. Correct me if I'm wrong will ya? This one was found along Evergreen Rd along the Toulomne River in Toulomne County.


Thanks to help from an western expert this is Northern Checkerspot. I found it along a mud puddle in a trashed out road inside Toulomne County, Groveland, CA.

23 comments:

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Wonderful pictures!

Shady Gardener said...

My grandson had a Pearl Crescent land on his hand this weekend. It even stayed there while he walked quite a ways to show his dad! A thrill indeed! :-) You always show great photos.

Town Mouse said...

Randy,

I really know nothing about butterflies, but here's what I see looking at the Laws Field Guide to the Sierra Nevada (maybe your library has that?).

I think the first picture of the Mylitta crescent is one (extensive orange, rounded hindwing) but the second picture might be a California Crescent with squarish hindwings.

I think you're right about the last two, though with the last, it's hard to tell whether you have a Variable Checkerspot (white spots on abdomen) or Ediths Checkerspot (no white spots on abdomen).

Anyway, I'm sure you could figure it out with the guidebook, or maybe someone else will jump in.

Regardless: Great Photos!!

Sue said...

Hi! I have had your blog on my computer since earlier in the day, waiting for me to get back and read. I can't remember now how I ended up here.

I enjoyed your butterfly photos, but can't help with the identification.

Tatyana@MySecretGarden said...

Not only the butterflies are beautiful, but the flowers, too!

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

I'm no help on the id, but they are very pretty! I'm amazed at how good you are at finding these butterflies, dragonflies, etc and then how beautiful your pictures are.
I'm going to post a couple of pictures tomorrow and I was hoping you might know what they are.

Kelly said...

I'm an eastern gal...and new at IDing butterflies, but had to say these are gorgeous captures!! The third and fifth are so striking...

sweet bay said...

Lovely photos Randy. The butterflies are beautiful.

Roy said...

Beautiful butterflies Randy. You certainly have a wide selection of species in the US.

Janet said...

Randy, I hope you get your ID's. I don't feel so dumb about butterflies when you aren't sure about some! Thanks ;-)

mothernaturesgarden said...

Great captures and they are beautiful whatever the name.
Donna

Heather said...

A whole vacation looking at and photographing what you love! My version of the perfect trip. I love Yosimite, great place, at least it was when I used to spend my afternoons there just reading by the stream. Probably too many folks for that now. Good finds on your flying friends too!

Helen said...

Butterflies really are one of nature's (many) miracles, aren't they? Your photographs are excellent.

tina said...

Super photos!

Rosey Pollen said...

This sounds extremely cheesy but I think butterflies are magical creatures! I love your photos!
Rosey

Michelle said...

Always a treat to read your butterfly posts Randy! Thanks. Sorry I can't help with the ID though.

Kelly said...

p.s. thanks for the heads up on the .png vs .jpeg. After researching, seems the color quality lost isn't that bad (our eyes are designed for the loss), so I'm going to start switching over--maybe linking to a picasaweb or some such beast also.

Grace Peterson said...

Hi Randy~~ I live in the west--Oregon but I can't tell a Fritillary from a Painted Lady. I love your photos. You must be extremely patient and stealth to capture these amazing creatures.

Q said...

Wonderful trip! Great butterflies.
My daughter has my western butterfly guide book so I cannot help with ids.
I love the kind of trip you took.
Sherry

Kanak Hagjer said...

I love seeing your butterfly photos. Excellent!

The Early Birder said...

Cracking series of 'flutter' photos Randy. I've only seen & captured one Fritillary this year (I think) & as you say they can be a devil to differentiate.

Matt Latham said...

Some cracking images here - its amazing that fritillaries all over the world look very similair but with just subtle differences.

Laura Z said...

Your photos came out great!
I'm so glad I found you on blotanical!
L