Mid-Atlantic Weekend Lep Field Forecast for May 31-June 1

Harvester puddling in Washington Co MD for Matt Orsie.

Harvester puddling in Washington Co MD for Matt Orsie.

Well, you heard it hear first — last week was the expected explosion of satyrids, with major emergences of Little Wood Satyr and several reports of Northern Pearly-eye, and of Carolina Satyr on Maryland’s western shore.  I suspect we’ll receive reports this weekend of Appalachian Brown, as well, although we’re a week or three away for Common Wood Nymph.

But the big excitement this week came from multiple Harvesters reported in Washington Co MD, with up to four at a time puddling contentedly together last weekend, and sightings continuing to come in throughout the week (sadly, none of them was mine, despite two trips to the area since their first report on Memorial Day — I’ve had rather unsatisfying looks at them as I flushed them out of alders, but nothing like Matt Orsie’s photo in this post.  Saturday, however, is another day…)

Both Zabulon and Hobomok Skippers are flying, together in some places (including Washington Co., where the dark Hobomok female form ‘pocahantas’ was seen this week).  The first Least Skippers were also on the wing locally; Crossline and Southern Broken-dash have made their appearances in the Carolinas and should be out here shortly.  Dusted Skippers emerged rather late and are still enjoying a good flight, especially in the mountains, and Pepper and Salt Skippers were seen in some numbers in WV.

More Monarch sightings came in from VA, MD, PA and well into the Northeast (CT).  I observed a very fresh male near Big Pool MD yesterday.

The azure show is still at a lull in most places around the region, although a few reports of probable Appalachian Azures and a few fresh Summer Azures graced the listservs.  American Coppers are abundant in some places and there were widespread reports from as far north as Maine.  An Oak Hairstreak was nectaring on privet in Durham, NC — they’re quite fond of these flowers.

The Memorial Day weekend provided first-of-season Red-spotted Purples.  This weekend we should get reports of Viceroy.  In the western MD counties and northern PA, White Admiral could be on the wing.  Red Admiral has been reported, mostly as singles, across the region.  While rare, Harris’ Checkerspots should be out in the next week or two.  Silvery Checkerspots were seen often in Virgina and the Carolinas.

Meadow Fritillaries are the only frits currently on the wing, and were reported from MD, PA, NJ and WV.

This weekend is shaping up to be two warm, sunny days — perfect for field work. Don’t forget to post or send your sightings for the next Weekend Forecast! In the meantime, visit us at https://leplog.wordpress.com/ and on Google Groups at MDLepsOdes.

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