Another Run at the Neck!

Well, despite the fierce heat and humidity, I did another trek out to the Bayview Garden and some other sites at Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge this weekend (I consider it heat training for the planned Great Dismal count next weekend).  Overall numbers were down, and a couple of fairly common things were in low numbers following this past week’s terrific heat wave.  Picked up viceroy and tawny emperor (which I missed last week), but didn’t see some of the good catches (salt marsh skipper in particular) from last week.  Swallowtail numbers were down but still pretty high; fewer blacks and dark morph tigers but an abundance of spicebush in every conceivable state of wear.  Zebras are pretty tattered.

The tawny emperor, Dick Smith informs me, is a Kent County record for BAMONA.  It was also #61 on my DelMarVa Big Year list.

In addition to the Bayview Butterfly Garden, I also had a chance to check out the 1/2 mile Wildlife Loop, which was actually pretty interesting (yielded both the snout and the emperor); has both cherry and holly in addition to the usual suspects so will likely be good azure and elfin hunting in the spring.  Finished up at the Wickliffe historical site, where eight or 10 common sootywings were nectaring on the white clover in the parking lot.

Finally gave in to the heat at around 2:30 p.m. and headed into Chestertown for a cold beer and a great cuban pork sandwich at Fish Whistle (highly recommended).

Aside from the occasional red and white clover and the plants in the Bayview Garden, nectar sources in the marsh areas were few and far between.  Goldenrod will come along in about 2 weeks, which might give an uptick in the rarer coastal skipper species.

As always, the numbers following the NABA convention (c=common, a=abundant, s=superabundant).

-==| Field Trip |==-

Date: 07/24/2010
Number of Species: 29
Number of Individuals: 640
Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge
Notes: Terrifically hot, hazy, humid — temps in the low 100’s.  Spent
10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the field, first at the Bayview Butterfly
Garden, where most of the species were seen.  Nectar sources there
included bellamcanda, joe-pye weed, rudbeckia, and various other
sunflowers and composites.  Liatris is almost bloomed out.  Goldenrod
has not yet begun to flower.

-==| List of Sightings for this Field Trip |==-
Common Name     Scientific Name Life Stage      Number Seen     Notes
Zebra Swallowtail       Eurytides marcellus     Adult   A
Black Swallowtail       Papilio polyxenes       Adult   C
Eastern Tiger Swallowtail       Papilio glaucus Adult   A
Spicebush Swallowtail   Papilio troilus Adult   A
Cabbage White   Pieris rapae    Adult   C
Orange Sulphur  Colias eurytheme        Adult   4
Little Yellow   Eurema lisa     Adult   5
Gray Hairstreak Strymon melinus Adult   3
Red-banded Hairstreak   Calycopis cecrops       Adult   2
Eastern Tailed-Blue     Everes comyntas Adult   C
American Snout  Libytheana carinenta    Adult   1       At the
entrance to the Wildlife Trail
Variegated Fritillary   Euptoieta claudia       Adult   2
Silvery Checkerspot     Chlosyne nycteis        Adult   2
Pearl Crescent  Phyciodes tharos        Adult   A
Red Admiral     Vanessa atalanta        Adult   C       very common in
the nettle stands along the Wildlife Trail; many newly eclosed
Common Buckeye  Junonia coenia  Adult   C
Red-spotted Purple      Limenitis arthemis astyanax     Adult   1
Viceroy Limenitis archippus     Adult   2       Among willows along
the main Refuge road
Tawny Emperor   Asterocampa clyton      Adult   1
Monarch Danaus plexippus        Adult   2
Silver-spotted Skipper  Epargyreus clarus       Adult   S
Hayhurst’s Scallopwing  Staphylus hayhurstii    Adult   2
Horace’s Duskywing      Erynnis horatius        Adult   3
Common Sootywing        Pholisora catullus      Adult   C
Especially common in the parking area at the Wicliffe historical area,
nectaring on clover
Least Skipper   Ancyloxypha numitor     Adult   2
Sachem  Atalopedes campestris   Adult   1
Zabulon Skipper Poanes zabulon  Adult   2       Fresh male, torn but
fresh female
Broad-winged Skipper    Poanes viator   Adult   C
Dun Skipper     Euphyes vestris Adult   A

This entry was posted in checklists, general butterfly news, Maryland Big Year, state butterflies. Bookmark the permalink.

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