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Old Nov 6, 2012, 9:08 PM   #1
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Default Last of the Butterflies

Late Autumn here in East Tennessee is not butterfly season - especially not this year as we have already seen several widespread frosts, and some light snow. But I am about a month behind in PP work on photos, and thought you might enjoy a few 'flies from recent, warmer days.

Trail work days are great days for nature-watching too. Was out on the trail a few weeks ago, and noticed an injured White Oak. The fermenting sap was a "magnet" for late-season butterflies (and other insects as well).

Here are several views of a Mourning Cloak (and some "friends") at the "sap bar." These butterflies overwinter as adults, and are usually the last ones we see out and active in the fall, and the first flying in the spring.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 9:10 PM   #2
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Red Admirals are another long-lived butterfly. By autumn they are looking a bit tattered! Interesting color patterns both open-winged and folded...
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 9:13 PM   #3
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Both of our common species of Angle Wing butterflies are also active late into the autumn, and early in the spring. Eastern Commas have a comma-shaped mark, quite obvious when wings are folded...
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 9:14 PM   #4
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The other common angle-wing is called the Question Mark - named for its distinctive wing marking.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 9:18 PM   #5
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For some reason, this has been a banner year for our smallest native Sulphur butterfly - the Little Yellow. Have spotted new county records for these dainty little 'flies in several East Tennessee counties this year. They are usually more common further south - perhaps last year's mild winter allowed them to move further north? Little Yellow is another late season butterfly, but not attracted to fermented sap. They do enjoy the late-blooming asters though...
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 9:20 PM   #6
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Hope you enjoyed seeing these last few butterflies of the season, and that you will share your comments and critique.
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Old Nov 7, 2012, 8:36 AM   #7
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Those Little Yellow images are my favorite. Beautiful coloring.

Thanks for sharing these lovely images.
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Old Nov 7, 2012, 9:15 AM   #8
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Wow you got some sharp results Mole, I need to start using my flash more often for macro shots, you did great. Those little guys are well camouflaged.

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Old Nov 10, 2012, 10:23 PM   #9
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NMR - They sure are "cutie-beauties" aren't they!

Hans - I usually prefer to not use flash, but these 'flies were in such a dark, shady location... And you are so right - some of them are amazingly well camouflaged!
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Old Nov 12, 2012, 7:51 PM   #10
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I am amazed at the eye detail you got in these flies. Nice work!

Lou
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