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Old Feb 2, 2012, 2:24 PM   #1
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Default Please check out the Monarchs

My fellow Panny users, please go check out my post of the Monarch Butterfly colony I visited earlier this week. I think it's a very special place and I want to share them with you. Thanks!

http://forums.steves-digicams.com/wi...-preserve.html
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Old Feb 2, 2012, 10:11 PM   #2
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Unbelievable, Saly - the plants are blooming monarchs! I can' imagine seeing for real so many butterflies in one place. Thanks for taking us there. Did you get a chance to use your LC55 here?
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Old Feb 3, 2012, 7:03 AM   #3
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Monarchs are at the top of the pyramid for butterflies in my view! In SWPA we have a few. Their season here is short, perhaps two months. I have made a point of getting as many images as possible, but they are very difficult to "pose." Unlike others, they are flighty, and hard to settle. Despite seeing one fly around, having it settle long enough to get close is rare. In 2010, I had one good session. In 2012, I had two short sessions, and that is all. However, one of those produced several good images for me.

They leave here in early Fall, and fly to Mexico. Many have been banded and traced, so the locals know where they eventually land. The last generation in the Fall is a larger butterfly, capable of making the flight from here to Mexico. Other generations are smaller, and unable to make that distance. Yes, it takes three or four generations to get from Mexico, back to the same place of their ancestors.

Some local folks are concerned about survival this last Fall on the flight from PA to Mexico. Their flight path always takes them over Texas, and the drought in 2011 may have left too little vegetation for them to survive while on their flight path. There was some evidence that their path was changed in 2011, but in locations further north. We will only know the plight of their numbers after they return here in Spring.

It is my understanding, the Monarch is unique in their migration patterns. Others may move a little further south, but not into Mexico like the Monarch. I have never heard anybody say the PA-based Monarchs go to California, rather only Mexico. They must have hard-wired GPSs to guide them to Mexico.

Thanks for sharing those wonderful pics.
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Old Feb 3, 2012, 9:58 AM   #4
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I don't think I've ever seen anything like that. Well captured!
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Old Feb 3, 2012, 11:35 AM   #5
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Incredible series Yuki, thanks for sharing!
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Old Feb 3, 2012, 1:45 PM   #6
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Thanks Raghu, Roger, Tullio, Alex! Truly a magical experience to see 90,000 butterflies clinging to trees, while a whole bunch flutter from tree to tree!

Raghu, I didn't have my close up lens, but was using a 200mm on my GF1. These butterflies are pretty high up in the tree (10ft/3m and up), plus the area is roped off to keep people out so you can't get too close to disturb them. There's nothing stopping people from stepping over the rope, but the few people I saw were very respectful of the little visitors and kept their distance.
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Old Feb 5, 2012, 11:28 PM   #7
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Excellent shots saly, amazing subjects, well captured!
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