October 30, 2022

The Butterflies of 2022

common buckeye
Common Buckeye

We've flirted with frost at my house, but we haven't had a hard freeze. There are still butterflies fluttering through the state, which is a special joy at this time of year. During the "warm" months, I enjoy tracking and counting butterflies during my hikes, and reporting my sightings to wisconsinbutterflies.org.

The numbers of monarchs were down this past season, but hopefully it was just regional and we'll have more next spring, summer, and fall. What follows are a few of the butterfly sightings of the past year, in no particular order. There were many more; this is just a small sample:
mourning cloak
Mourning Cloak

tiger swallowtail
Tiger Swallowtail


eastern tailed-blue
Eastern Tailed-Blue

ss skipper
Silver-Spotted Skipper

pecks skipper
Peck's Skipper

cabbage white
Cabbage White

pearl crescent
Pearl Crescent

black swallowtail
Black Swallowtail

painted lady
Painted Lady

common wood-nymph
Common Wood-Nymph


All photos were taken in local natural areas, botanical gardens, and my own property. While there likely will be more butterfly sightings yet this fall, the season is winding down. I'll miss them during the winter, and look forward to sightings in the year ahead.

October 19, 2022

Wordless Wednesday: October Fen

autumn insets
Mid-October Fen
[Insets, L to R: New England Aster (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae), Velvety Goldenrod (Solidago mollis),
Small White Aster (Symphyotrichum racemosum), Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia)]

late summer with insets
Late August Fen
[Insets, L to R: Canada Goldenrod (Solidago canadensis), Joe-Pye Weed (Eutrochium maculatum),
Great Blue Lobelia (Lobelia siphilitica), Sweet Black-Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia subtomentosa)]

midsummer insets
July Fen
[Insets, L to R: Wild Bergamot (Monarda fistulosa), Sawtooth Sunflower (Helianthus grosseserratus),
Virginia Mountain Mint (Pycnanthemum virginianum), Prairie Blazing Star (Liatris pycnostachya)]

spring insets
May Fen
[Insets, L to R: Wood Betony (Pedicularis canadensis), Wild Strawberry (Fragaria virginiana), Golden Alexander (Zizia aurea)]

January Fen