Prime Time for SE Arizona Counts

Fred Heath posted earlier today on SoWestLep the list of upcoming counts in southeastern Arizona.  With vacation plans in the making, any of these might make a good addition to a desert southwest trip you could be thinking about:

>>It is getting close to prime butterfly count time in SE AZ. Below find a
listing of upcoming counts with dates, meeting times and places, and
compilers contact info. Please consider coming out to help your fellow
butterflyers contribute to butterfly science, as well as having a fun day
followed by a great celebratory count compilation dinner. Beginners are
always welcome. There is a $3 per person participation fee. 

The counts in AZ always stand out and last year’s counts were no exception.
The top three counts in the country were all here in SE AZ: 1st Patagonia
with 98 species, 2nd Ramsey Canyon with 86 species and 3rd the fall Santa
Rita Mts. with 81 species. In addition, the spring Sabino Canyon count with
63 species was tied for first for a spring count. This year’s spring Sabino
count in early April logged 61 species.

Upcoming Counts: 

Saturday July 20 Sabino Canyon Summer Compiler Karen Nickey (520) 326-2070;

Last year this count was the only one with Black Checkerspot and tied for
1st for Colorado Hairstreak numbers (just 1). Count covers Sabino Canyon
and the Catalina Highway to the top of Mt. Lemmon. Meet in front of the
Sabino Canyon Visitor Center at 6:30 AM. Groups will cover Sabino Canyon and
other lowland areas in the morning, then go up the Catalina Highway as the
day heats up. Parties wanting to start in the mountains should contact Karen
for assignments. There will be a compilation dinner at Casa Molina (4240 E.
Grant Road…just west of Swan) starting at 5:00 PM

Saturday July 27 Portal Compiler Fred Heath

Count was restarted last year after the devastating Horseshoe II Fire of
2011 in the Chiricahua Mountains and it will be interesting to see how
butterfly populations respond to the fire for years to come. The count
circle covers the various areas around Cave Creek including South Fork, SW
Research Station and Herb Martyr Picnic Area with Turkey Creek, Rustler and
Barfoot Parks and on the western edge, Pinery Canyon campground. Although
the count last year had rain in the high country all day, we still managed
to find national high counts for Common Sootywing and Bronze
Roadside-Skipper We will meet at the parking lot (with restrooms) at the
Forest Service Visitors Center west of the Portal Store and Café at 8:00AM.
Please contact Fred if you are interested in participating in this count or
if you’d like to cover a particular area on your own. There will not be a
formal compilation at the end of the day. 

Sunday July 28 Santa Rita Mountains Summer Compiler Mary Klinkel 

This count, just started in 2011, includes Madera, Box, and Montosa Canyons.
Even though the count last year was rained out by 2:30 PM, this count still
managed to find national high numbers for 6 species including Elada
Checkerspot, Canyonland Satyr (tied with 1 individual with one other count),
Golden-headed Scallopwing, Common Streaky Skipper, 8 Moon-marked Skipper
(was one of only two counts that recorded this species last year) and Cassus
Roadside-Skipper. Unless you have made prior arrangements with Mary, the
meeting place for leader and area assignments will be outside of McDonald’s
at exit 69 of I-19 in Green Valley at 7:30AM . Compilation dinner at El
Charro Restaurant in Sahuarita

Saturday August 3 Ramsey Canyon Compiler Doug Danforth

Many areas of this count were burnt and/or inaccessible in 2011 with count
numbers down drastically. However in 2012 species numbers bounced back and
the count recorded 86 species, the 2nd highest in the country. This will be
another opportunity to see how the butterflies recover after fire. 14
species recorded were national highs last year, including an all-time high
of 426 Mexican Yellows. Scudder’s Duskywing and Four-spotted Skipperling
were only recorded on this count. The count circle includes all of the
canyons on the east side of the Huachuca Mts. (Ash, Miller, Carr, Ramsey,
etc), as well as Coronado National Memorial and the San Pedro River. Meet
at Lone Star Cafe at Hereford Road and Highway 92 south of Sierra Vista at
6:00 AM for breakfast and to be assigned a leader and count area. There will
be a compilation dinner in Sierra Vista.

Saturday August 10 Patagonia Compiler Rich Bailowitz ; 

This count is usually among top 2 or 3 in the country and last year the 98
species recorded made it number one. As would be expected, there were a lot
of national highs…. 27 species to be exact with the 44 Toltec
Roadside-Skippers being an all-time high. Seven species were only found on
this count including the single Rosita Patch which has only been recorded
once before on a butterfly count. If you are into skippers (38 species
found) or want to learn them, especially the roadside-skippers (9 species
recorded), this is the count for you. Meet at 6:00 AM at the Gathering
Grounds in Patagonia for breakfast and to be assigned a leader and
territory. Plan to stay for the compilation dinner in Patagonia or Sonoita
at 5:30 PM. 

Later Counts: Save the dates. Information on meeting times and places and
other details will be sent out in August

Saturday September 7 Boyce Thompson Arboretum Compiler Dave Powell 

Sunday September 29 Santa Rita Mts. Fall Compiler Mary Klinkel  <<

This entry was posted in Field Trips/Annual Counts, general butterfly news, state butterflies. Bookmark the permalink.

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