Edwards’ Hairstreak in Frederick Municipal Forest

I planned to meet up with Tom Stock yesterday morning in the Frederick Municipal Watershed Forest off Gambrill Park Road in Frederick Co., but a late start and traffic snarls on I-70 east of Frederick had me pulling up at 10 am, just as Tom was coming off the trail after successfully scoring three FOY Edwards’ hairstreaks in the weedy fields and scrub oak where they’ve been observed for some years.   Somehow I couldn’t manage to convince him to walk back to the fields again, and anyhow it was getting even hotter and the hairstreak show would most likely be over for the day — they tend to stay low and visible only early in the morning.  But I decided to give it the old college try and headed off down the trail.

Very little else was flying; I did see two cloudless sulphurs, common wood nymphs, and both current duskywings, Horace’s and wild indigo.  But despite our concerns about it getting too late in the day, I picked up one Edward’s — pretty worn — as soon as I entered the field where we usually find these hairstreaks.  Over the next hour, in between picking and eating a lot of blueberries, I managed another four Edwards’ — two worn like the first one, and two fairly fresh.  The last one I saw was around 1130 hours, and I was ready to head back to the car’s A/C.

I left Frederick Forest at about noon to twitch for the great white heron that has been reported in Ft. Frederick State Park near Big Pool in Allegany County.  It was a ridiculously easy find, standing in plain view of the road in the beaver pond near the campground.  Butterfly hunting around the beaver pond train was, to be gracious, uneventful.  Saw very few leps the rest of the day, but I still had an Edwards’ and white heron celebratory dinner at the Hancock Park ‘N Dine (where one can spend a lot of the meal trying to identify the British butterflies on the menu and wallpaper).

Date: 07/06/2012
Number of Species: 12
Number of Individuals: 40
Frederick Municipal Forest
MD , USA   21702
Hazy, mostly sunny, temperature around 90 F.  In the field 1000-1130 hours.  Nectar sources included red clover and yellow Baptisia.

Common Name    Scientific Name Life Stage      Number Seen     Notes
Black Swallowtail       Papilio polyxenes       Adult   1
Cabbage White   Pieris rapae    Adult   5
Cloudless Sulphur       Phoebis sennae  Adult   2
Edwards’ Hairstreak     Satyrium edwardsii      Adult   5       All perched low on scrub oak or adjacent forbs
Eastern Tailed-Blue     Everes comyntas Adult   common
Pearl Crescent  Phyciodes tharos        Adult   2
Red Admiral     Vanessa atalanta        Adult   1
Red-spotted Purple      Limenitis arthemis astyanax     Adult   1
Common Wood-Nymph       Cercyonis pegala        Adult   2
Monarch Danaus plexippus        Adult   1
Horace’s Duskywing      Erynnis horatius        Adult   2
Wild Indigo Duskywing   Erynnis baptisiae       Adult   3

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