American Lady Caterpillars 

Backyard butterflies (literally), 3 individuals found on a single host plant of Pussytoes in S.Salinas. 

Continue reading “American Lady Caterpillars “


Fiery Skippers, Salinas

The Fiery Skippers have been dropping copious amounts of eggs on the grass in S. Salinas. The activity seems to have tapered off in the past week.

Collected on 8/21.

Huddart Park, Redwood City

Two hikes around Huddart Park traversing the Richard Roads and Crystal springs trail brought swallowtails, faded California Sisters near water sources, and Hairstreaks. Now I haven’t been able to identify the Hairstreak and have it down to either a Hedgerow or Golden Oak. It was found in the oaks on Richard Roads Trail. I thought they were moths at first, I found them by shaking the trees in the shade. They would fly a short distance, land  and then disappear. I told my non-butterfly hiking friends to go ahead so I could search them out. I was able to flush out about 8-10 individuals and photo a few.

Visited on 8/13 and 8/14

I’d like to come back earlier in the season and check both the water and oaks…Next year.

Hedgerow or Golden Hairstreak?
Banana Slug (for fun)
California Sister

Two new species for Monterey butterfly count

6/11/2016  9:30 am – 5 pm

A rare day without fog greeted 13 grateful participants (photo above) for the 9th annual Monterey butterfly count.  Despite lingering drought conditions, observers tallied 46 species, only 3 short of the 2012 count high of 49.  Gulf fritillary (photo below) and Pacuvius duskywing were new species for the count – Jan Austin found gulf fritillaries on Passion vines near Lover’s Pt. in Pacific Grove, while Dave Bartholomew hiked the rugged Rocky Ridge at Garrapata SP for a hilltopping Pacuvius duskywing.  Other notable sightings included higher than usual numbers of mourning cloaks, anise swallowtails, and hedgerow hairstreaks.


The complete count list:

anise swallowtail  9
pale sw  33
w. tiger sw 44
veined white  18
cabbage wh  43
checkered wh  7
large marble  4
California dogface  1
orange sulphur  1
purplish copper  10
great copper 9
brown elfin  6
California hairstreak  1
hedgerow ha  6
gray ha  13
echo az  206
Smith’s dotted blue  37
acmon blue  106
Boisduval’s blue  1
gulf fritillary  3
callippe fritillary  161
coronis fritillary  37
variable checkerspot  76
mourning cloak  8
field crescent  1
mylitta crescent  53
oreas comma  4
satyr comma  10
w. coast lady  2
painted lady  2
American lady  16
red admiral  15
common buckeye  118
California sister  31
Lorquin’s admiral  22
monarch  4
common wood-nymph  32
common ringlet  41
propertius duskywing  4
pacuvius duskywing 1
funereal duskywing  3
mournful duskywing  19
common checkered-skipper   7
fiery skipper  13
rural skipper  217
umber skipper  4
–  Chris Tenney

Hairstreaks topped by a blue

Pine Canyon Rd., King City, 5/15/16, 11:00 am – 3 pm; Arroyo Seco Gorge, 4-5 pm

This day should be remembered for some super hairstreaks, seven species in all . . but then along came blue . . .

While sorting out California, hedgerow, and mountain mahogany hairstreaks (among others) nectaring on wooly yerba santa, Sara noticed a low-flying blue that looked “different.”  I strolled over for a look, and netted the bug when it refused to land.  Then opened the net to find, wow, really?, a MARINE blue!  My first ever in Monterey county.  Only the 4th county record, the first documented with photo and specimen.

Many thanks to Jan Austin and Sara Ryndfleisz for sharing this day.

Here’s our complete trip list:

pale swallowtail  16
w. tiger sw  2
anise sw  1
cabbage white  1
Sara orangetip  9
Bernardino blue  4
acmon bl  13
echo azure  20
silvery bl  1
marine blue  1
brown elfin  8
California hairstreak  32
gold-hunter’s ha  3
hedgerow ha  5
great purple ha  1
mountain mahogany ha  7
bramble green ha  1
callippe fritillary  3
leanira checkerspot  45
Gabb’s ch  7
variable ch  50+
Edith’s ch  3
California tortoiseshell  2
mourning cloak  1
Lorquin’s admiral  6
California sister  25
common buckeye  2
monarch  2
common ringlet  2
northern cloudywing  1
mournful duskywing  3
propertius duskywing  2
Columbian skipper  1
rural sk  16
 – Chris Tenney